It's offical! Announced just a few minutes ago, 21-year-old Puerto Rico native Nellys Pimentel is Miss Earth 2019. Beating out 84 other delegates, she just made history as the first-ever Puerto Rican to hold the title. The annual pageant, held locally once again for the fourth time in a row, was staged at the Cove Manila in Okada.
Nellys, a Marketing and Psychology student, is set to succeed Miss Earth 2018 Nguyen Phuong Khanh of Vietnam. Her one year reign will be dedicated to advancing discussions and projects on environmental issues around the globe while wearing the coveted Ramona Haar crown. Designed in 2009 by Miss Earth's Official Jeweller Ramona Haar, the environmentally friendly and intricate floral designed crown was crafted from 100% recycled 14K Gold and Argentums Sterling Silver.
True to today's plight on climate change most notably led by 16-year-old Greta Thunberg, for the Q&A portion, Nellys was asked how she would stress the existence of climate change to those who don't believe in it. Her winning answer then focused on the importance of education:
"I would have to say that addressing this issue of people not believing in climate change is more of a matter of lack of education and not only a lack of education but also the ignorance and not wanting to inform themselves of the fact that we are living in a planet that is our biggest home, and we have taken advantage of it instead of putting back what it is giving to us. Making notable leaders and a lot of influencers engage with themselves and become better people is the most important thing to do," Nellys said.
Coming in as the first runner-up is Miss USA and now Miss Air 2019 Emanii Davis. While Czech Republic's Klara Vavruskova and Belarus' Alisa Manenok were hailed Miss Water 2019 and Miss Fire 2019, respectively.
Meanwhile, Miss Philippines Janelle Lazo Tee, a 28-year-old Pasig native, failed to secure a spot in the top 10. However, she did finish valiantly as part of the top 20.