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Intersections of Change

TEDxCapeTown will be playing its part in the global TED Countdown Summit. “Countdown is a global initiative to champion and accelerate solutions to the climate crisis, turning ideas into action.” We will be inviting local activists/ green change agents who have positioned themselves as social impact leaders, driving actionable change. 

Our behaviour patterns in this decade will determine the future of our planet and as individuals, we have the power to contribute to a better world. We are at an exciting juncture where we do not have to recreate the behaviours and economies that were, but rather think forward to normal and implement much-needed change. TED Countdown’s goal is “to build a better future by cutting greenhouse gas emissions in half by 2030 in the race to a zero-carbon world – a world that is safer, cleaner and fairer for everyone.” 

During October, TED Global and TEDxCapeTown invite you to play an active role and collaborate with us - both globally and locally. 

To inspire action and shed light on local activities, TEDxCapeTown will present a two-part series featuring past TEDx speakers and local activists, researchers, and community leaders. All speakers are renowned in their fields for raising awareness around action-based initiatives. 

Our goal is to influence behaviour change we as humans can adopt, so that the climate doesn’t have to. 



APARNA PALLAVI is an environmental journalist and food researcher. Her thought-provoking 2018 talk, ‘Food and Shame: Reclaiming Vanishing Diets’ at the TEDxCapeTownWomen conference, begs us to ask why the food our ancestors ate has disappeared from our plates.

Aparna researches and writes about uncultivated foods available in India's forests and indigenous people's knowledge and culture around them. Her research is independent and extensive, and she has been featured in numerous books and publications, including two books on indigenous food namely First Food: A Taste of India's Biodiversity and First Food: Culture of Taste, both published by the Centre for Science and Environment. 

Currently, she is writing a book about disappearing foods and the dishes replacing them. She has a blog all about the return to the food of our ancestors and connecting with our food more deeply. 


DAVID PARRY-DAVIES hung up his suit and left corporate London to pursue his real calling: environmental conservation. His TEDxCapeTown talk ‘Eco-Logic: To heal people and planet’ is all about new ways and better outcomes.

Just like an Encyclopedia provides a wealth of information on any topic, David’s Enviropaedia guides us towards a more sustainable way forward. Its focus is around networking, linking us to environmental information and action-based initiatives. David also heads up the Eco-Logic Awards which puts the spotlight on, and celebrates, environmental action across a range of sectors to encourage the changes we wish to see. 


KHANYISILE (KHANYI) CHABA, literally climbs mountains whilst also championing ethical leadership, heading up sustainable development at one of Africa’s largest insurance companies (Old Mutual Limited). In her inspiring TEDxJohannesburgSalon talk, ‘Tackling climate change is like climbing a mountain’, she compares how the same approach to reaching mountain peaks is the one needed to tackle climate change. 

Khanyi takes a strong stand in ensuring we leave behind a world that future generations can enjoy. Her responsibility for the planet extends to her community, where she has been fostering and mentoring children in vulnerable circumstances and supporting their educational development. Khanyi gives back by involving herself with the Shoshana Foundation, which assists in raising funds for child-headed households and single moms. 



BHONGOLWETHU SONTI is focused on finding ways for meaningful youth engagement in policy and sustainable development impact. He is co-owner of Trash Pirate, an environmentally focused waste management company as well as the Director of Programmes for Tore's Africa Foundation. He is also a member of the Commonwealth Gender Equality Network, working to improve the position of young people, and advocate for increased youth engagement and participation in existing structures, processes and governance.

In 2016, Bhongowelthu took to the TEDxYouth@CapeTown stage and shared his talk, The chemistry of meaningful youth engagement. He believes that the best thing you could do for the world, and for yourself, is be the leading example of the change you would like to see. Bhongolwethu works to improve the position of young people, and advocate for their increased engagement and participation in existing structures, processes and governance.

From this conversation Bhongolwethu hopes to learn from the other panelists on how they are applying themselves to be the solution to climate change, how they are tackling tough conversations around consumption and our every day conveniences that impact the environment detrimentally.