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Young climate change speaker makes NZ first stop on world tour

Climate change and the environment is sure to be on the political agenda this election year, and while New Zealand is doing well according to a teenage climate campaigner, we could be doing more.

1 NEWS' Kim Savage met the 16-year-old American who's travelling the world to rally support. Source: 1 NEWS

Xiuhtezcatl Martinez, 16, is travelling the world speaking about climate change, and his first stop is Wellington.

"Any young person has the potential to create change in their community send rippples out and fix the entire planet," he says.

He started young, and now has an impressive resume, having addressed the United Nations on the topic, and being one of 21 teenagers who won the right to sue the US Government over climate change inaction.

It's an important case, he says, and it could set an important precedent.

"Imagine if one of the biggest polluting consuming countries on the planet were to begin to take steps to reduce their emissions... like, drastically ... what kind of statement would that show to the New Zealand Government here?"

Under the Paris agreement New Zealand has committed to reducing greenhouse gas emissions to 30 per cent below 2005 levels by 2030.

Kiwi environmentalist Kiri Danielle says there are simple things everyday New Zealanders can do to help.

"We need to make better decisions at the supermarket shops ... buy produce from people that aren't ruining the earth and really take it upon ourselves," she says.