United States

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7 12, 2023

We Must Shut Down Factory Farms To Protect Clean Water And Environmental Justice

2023-12-07T17:44:57-05:00Tags: |

Gloria Reuben is the president of Waterkeeper Alliance, a global advocacy group network that protects the world’s waters. She brings attention to the impacts of factory farming on environmental justice. The way food is currently being produced is wreaking havoc on ecosystems and on people’s livelihoods. This is particularly true for animal agriculture, with concentrated animal feeding operations being the most damaging. In the United States, waste and discharge from these farms are largely unregulated, leading to pollution of both water and air. This has catastrophic downstream effects as drinking water becomes contaminated and river ecosystems and fisheries collapse, resulting in economic losses that cost billions annually to repair this damage. Additionally, pathogen-filled water and polluted air poses public health risks, predominantly in the form of respiratory disease and infection. This issue is also an example of environmental racism, as these farms are predominantly located in rural locations near communities of color, whose health will be negatively impacted the most. To combat this social and ecological issue, Reuben urges for proper enforcement of existing legislation like the Clean Water Act and passing of new legislations like the Farm Reform Act in order to transition away from these harmful practices towards sustainable food production by legitimately independent actors. Furthermore, those who can, are encouraged to avoid buying from companies that perpetuate this devastating factory farming system.  Photo Credit: Vuk Valcic/Sopa Images/Lightrocket via Getty Images 

17 11, 2023

Women and LGBTQ+ people are uniquely vulnerable to climate change, new report shows

2024-02-26T09:06:22-05:00Tags: |

For the first time since its inception, the fifth National Climate Assessment included a section dedicated to studying how climate change impacts women and LGBTQ+ people. This addition reflects changing public and governmental acknowledgement of the ways climate change exacerbates existing inequalities. Key ideas of the report include disproportionate experiences for women due to unique mental, sexual, and reproductive health needs that intersect with social, racial, and economic disparities and particular vulnerabilities for LGBTQ+ people as they are excluded from many social services. Climate change makes it harder for women, especially women of color, to access reproductive health care. At the same time, health concerns are rising for women because of the crisis and existing environmental concerns that are especially pressing in low income neighborhoods, such as heat exposure and pollution. Pregnant women are particularly vulnerable to climate-related health problems, including poor pregnancy outcomes and increased maternal mortality rates. LGBTQ+ people also face increased difficulty accessing support post disasters due to exclusion from many faith-based groups and even being blamed for disasters in faith circles. The report highlights the urgency for unique disaster planning to meet the needs of vulnerable communities and the importance of amplifying intersectionality in climate research.  

10 08, 2023

Indigenous activists say Haw River should be a legal entity

2024-02-20T10:58:26-05:00Tags: |

Crystal Cavalier-Keck and her husband Jason Campos-Keck are leading an educational movement in North Carolina to give rights to the Haw River, which flows for over 110 miles and sustains a 1700-mile watershed basin critical for wildlife conservation. The couple aims to pass House Bill 795, a piece of legislation that would declare the river as a legal entity, providing it with stronger protections from polluting industries. Current environmental laws fall short of adequately protecting Haw River. In Indigenous culture, humans see nature as a living relative. Bringing Rights of Nature into government law would allow local Indigenous peoples to care for the river as such and allow organizations and other entities to sue polluting entities on its behalf. The Keck’s organization, Seven Directions of Service, is wary that the government may not accept or pass such a law; however, just in raising the issue, the two hope to inspire more care and action throughout the community. Photo Credit: Celeste Gracia/WFAE

27 07, 2023

The Color of Grass Roots: Diversifying the Climate Movement

2023-12-05T13:24:30-05:00Tags: , |

Heather McTeer Toney highlights the immediate intersectionality of the climate crisis and the historic and contemporary struggles, work, and hope of BIPOC communities throughout it. Toney is Greenville, Mississippi’s youngest and first Black female mayor and has been fighting for water rights in her area, not realizing that she was continuing a legacy of environmentalism that goes back hundreds of years. Black communities have been at the frontlines of environmental and climate related issues for centuries as environmental justice is inextricably linked to their experiences of social justice. Toney highlights the need for affected communities to be involved in decision making in the future. She then shifts the conversation to hope and perseverance by uplifting faith communities that have provided safe and empowering spaces for Black communities throughout various movements. This hope has often been missing from the climate movement. Recognizing the climate crisis as part of a contemporary continuation of historic systems of oppression and learning from the communities leading the way to justice is how we can make radical change.  Photo Credit: United Women in Faith

18 05, 2023

The Many Lives of Water

2024-02-26T09:44:26-05:00Tags: |

Water holds significant cultural importance in Indigenous communities, particularly in the Pacific Northwest, Hawai‘i, and the Southwest of the United States. This article highlights the global challenge of accessing clean water, which is now threatened due to commodification. It advocates for repairing our relationship with water, valuing it as a sacred and essential element for all life. While women leaders and specific organizations are not mentioned, the text showcases how Indigenous communities protect water even in regions with limited access. It emphasizes the spiritual connection to water and encourages decentralized, safe, affordable, and accessible solutions to address water challenges. Photo Illustration Credits: Mer Young for YES! Media

25 04, 2023

From Farm Workers To Land Healers

2023-07-30T13:28:25-04:00Tags: |

  Former immigrant and Indigenous farmworkers have been using their cultural knowledge of sustainable fire practices to control wildfires and reclaim work in natural spaces. The workers previously faced hazardous and unhealthy conditions while being employed on vineyards, including exposure to toxic fumes and smoke, especially when harvesting through active fires. There was little financial compensation or support for their safety. Now, the workers are spearheading ecological restoration programs in wildfire prone areas. They are positioning themselves as leaders and educators in order to gain self-determination over their relationship to the land, reclaim former cultural practices, and have an active role in healing. The programs are offered in Spanish and local Indigenous languages and ensure that land workers are well-paid, safe, respected, and have autonomy in their work. These efforts mark an ongoing transition in climate mitigation efforts, centered on the intention to heal and grow both the environment and frontline communities. Photo credit: Brooke Anderson/YES! Magazine

23 04, 2023

Diane Wilson on Fighting Plastic Pollution, Losing Everything, and Gaining Her Soul

2024-02-26T09:30:03-05:00Tags: |

Diane Wilson, a fourth-generation shrimper from Seadrift, Texas, has been leading a three-decade-long fight against Formosa Plastics' pollution. The company's toxic polyvinyl chloride powder covered the town, leading to health issues and harm to the local fishing industry. Wilson persisted through hunger strikes, arrests, and legal action, becoming an ally to Vietnamese fishermen wrongly blamed for the pollution's impact. In 2019, her efforts paid off with a historic $50 million settlement from Formosa for plastic nurdle pollution. Wilson donated the settlement to environmental causes. Her work upholds climate justice, highlights women's resistance, and emphasizes the need for women's involvement in climate action. The fight for accountability and sustainable solutions showcases her story and dedication to environmental justice. Photo Credit: Goldman Environmental Prize

17 04, 2023

Imagining a World Without Prisons

2023-11-28T18:55:42-05:00Tags: , |

Molly Lipson, a journalist and community organizer, discusses the intersections between carceral and environmental justice. She highlights the ways that prisons contribute to environmental degradation and the perpetuation of systems that work against historically underserved communities. Lipson showcases the discussion of the progress and tensions between sustainable futures and grassroots abolition movements with Andrea Johnson from the Renewable Rikers project and Jordan Martinez-Mazurek from Fight Toxic Prisons. Johnson is the architect of the Renewable Rikers project, which works to stop the toxicity of Rikers Island prison for inmates and those living in surrounding communities. Lipson captures her conversation with Martinez-Mazurek about the importance of making change for people actively impacted by the carceral system and its contingencies, as well as ensuring that society works towards an abolitionist future. Justice movements go hand in hand, and it’s necessary to understand the nuances of their intersections to achieve a better future for all. Photo credit: Nico Krijno

14 03, 2023

Banking (Literally) on Climate Solutions

2023-05-26T14:38:33-04:00Tags: |

Alec Connon explores the ways in which big banks contribute to the fossil fuel industry. Typically, when money is in a bank account, the bank can use up to 90% of the savings to provide loans to various companies. This means that the money you hold with a bank is potentially used to fund fossil fuel projects. Last year, three nonprofit organizations published “The Carbon Bankroll,” a report which quantifies the amount of greenhouse gas emissions created with the money saved in banks. For example, if you hold $50,000 in an account, that is the equivalent to taking 12 flights from New York City to London in one year. Connon also spoke with Tara Houska, an activist who demonstrated at Standing Rock. While demonstrating, a researcher shared a graph which highlighted banks that funded the pipeline. This information was used to increase support for the movement, using the hashtag #DefundDAPL. Since then, the movement to move money into environmentally responsible financial institutions has grown, with many banks committing to net-zero emissions by 2050. Connon closes the article by highlighting groups like Clean Energy Credit Union and Climate First Bank which provide viable banking options while also being environmentally conscious. During Connon’s talk with Houska, she discussed how people can often feel like there is nothing they can do to make a difference, yet she emphasizes how moving one’s money is an action that truly does make a difference.  Photo Credit: Alec Connon

6 03, 2023

The Willow Project Would Be a Public Health Crisis for Alaska

2023-05-26T14:35:43-04:00Tags: |

Yessenia Funes speaks with Siqiniq Maupin, an Iñupiaq person from Fairbanks, Alaska and the executive director of Sovereign Iñupiat for a Living Arctic, an organization which works to keep Iñupiat communities and environments healthy. Funes and Maupin discuss the threat the Willow Project poses to environmental and Iñupiat community well-being, as this project is estimated to extract 180,000 barrels of oil per day, making it the largest proposal under federal consideration. The Willow Project would be established in the National Petroleum Reserve in Alaska, an area which already extracts 480,000 barrels of oil per day and is home to Iñupiat communities, as well as critical habitat for Alaskan wildlife like walrus and caribou. Maupin has been campaigning against Willow since about 2019 yet acknowledges those who do support the project, as Iñupiat communities need economic investments to fund infrastructure such as new roads and running water. While Maupin understands this perspective, their organization is centered around education and awareness building across Iñupiat communities so that people make informed decisions. The Willow Project is predicted to bring 2500 construction jobs and about 300 permanent jobs with an estimated $17 billion in revenue. Maupin emphasizes the costs of this wealth, stressing the importance of future generations being able to connect to their heritage. Photo Credit: Kiliii Yüyan

4 03, 2023

Northern Express Fascinating People Of 2023

2023-07-30T12:46:21-04:00Tags: |

This article highlights twenty of the most fascinating individuals from Northern Michigan, two of which are Indigenous women. The first of these women, Jannan Cornstalk -- who is the founder of the Water is Life Festival of Mackinaw City, a member of the Indigenous Women’s Treaty Alliance, and a citizen of the Little Traverse Bay Band of Odawa Indians -- devotes herself to water rights activism. In 2018, she brought back the aforementioned festival, which engages local communities and centers the celebration of and connections with water. Cornstalk seeks to inspire the community to protect the Great Lakes and other waters through daily choices and lifestyle decisions. The second highlighted Indigenous woman is Joanne Cook, a member of the Grand Traverse Band of Ottawa and Chippewa Indians (GTB). Cook is presently the GTB’s chief appellate and has also served on Tribal Council and as a tribal court judge. Today, much of her work involves working with victims of crime and on the Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women (MMIW) project. She has also served on various local nonprofit boards. 

20 02, 2023

Black Girl Environmentalist Rejects Climate “Doomism”

2023-06-04T09:46:13-04:00Tags: |

Recently climate "doomism" has been spreading across social media. It is the idea that humanity is doomed and the climate crisis is too far along to be stopped or helped. Wnajiku "Wawa" Gatheru, the founder of Black Girl Environmentalist (BGE), is fighting to challenge this thinking. She argues that an oversaturation of doomism can lead to a loss of power for Black girls, Black women, and Black non-binary environmentalists whose identities are intertwined with environmental racism. Arielle V. King, the programming director at Black Girl Environmentalist, speaks on the deeply connected relationship of racial and environmental justice and the ability of the environmental justice movement to create self-determination for Black, Indigenous and low-income communities. Photo credit: Jesse Grant/Getty Images for Environmental Media Association/Courtesy of Arielle King and Roydenn Silcott

17 02, 2023

Mothers Of The Movement: Black Environmental Justice Activists Reflect On The Women Who Have Paved The Way

2023-06-04T09:36:09-04:00Tags: |

The Black community is disproportionately impacted by environmental racism and exposed to human-made environmental hazards. Black activists have been and still are trailblazing leaders and pioneers in the climate justice movement; however, they are often overlooked in history books and climate change conversations. To recognize this pivotal work, these interviews feature Black climate leaders' stories about the Black women who have inspired them in the environmental justice sector. A few of these include: Leah Thomas on Hazel M. Johnson, Abre' Conner on Kathleen Cleaver, Catherine Coleman Flowers on Sharon Lavigne, and Rhiana Gunn-Wright on Tamara Toles O'Laughlin, Colette Pichon Battle, Janelle Jones, Dr. Beverly Wright and Dorceta Taylor. Photo credit: Goldman Environmental Prize

13 02, 2023

Jacqueline Patterson: Honoring Legacy In The Environmental Movement

2023-07-30T13:18:17-04:00Tags: |

In an interview with Yessenia Funes, climate and environmental activist Jacqueline Patterson reflects on the legacy of Black communities, culture, and history, and their connections to the environmental movement. Patterson is the founder and director of The Chisholm Legacy Project, a Black-led climate organization working to empower Black communities. Patterson’s ideas of legacy reflect the spirit and work of Shirley Chisholm, a prominent leader. She first discusses cultural heritage and connection to the land. She notes how Black people were historically conservationists for survival, which fostered a kinship and understanding of the land that continues today. She also discusses the culture of the community that formed. She believes this legacy is crucial in environmental justice movements. Community fodders leadership and leadership fodders self-determination, which is a powerful tool in resisting inequities. BIPOC communities are disproportionately impacted by environmental injustice, and these legacies have historically fought this. Patterson highlights the Black women and youth on the frontlines of environmental, economic, and racial justice initiatives that continue these legacies. She emphasizes that the sustenance of these legacies and the continuation of positive change must center around the wellness of those embodying these ideas. Justice movements centered on community and liberation will lead to systemic transformation. Photo credit: Jacqueline Patterson/Atmos

5 01, 2023

Nature’s Tools Help Clean Up Urban Rivers

2024-02-14T10:16:22-05:00Tags: , |

This article, written by Katherine Rapin, explores the work of various organizations dedicated to restoring freshwater ecosystems through the reintroduction of bivalves (oysters and mussels) and aquatic plant species. These organisms improve water quality in numerous ways including nutrient cycling, acting as carbon sinks, and holding sediment together. Rapin highlights the work of Danielle Kreeger, the science director of the Partnership for the Delaware Estuary, which oversees a freshwater mussel hatchery in the Philadelphia area. One important dimension of reintroduction work is retaining the genetic diversity of wild populations, while also not introducing any diseases. Kreeger mentions the work her team is conducting on biosecurity to ensure the safety of bivalve populations. As well, experts emphasize how reintroduction measures must be conducted in conjunction with other frameworks to decrease contaminants, especially the addition of excess nutrients in these waterways. According to Kelly Somers, the senior watershed coordinator of the EPA’s Mid-Atlantic Region, in recent years, there have been discoveries of healthy seagrass beds along the Delaware River which are signifiers of improved water quality. Through decades of aquatic plant work, scientists attribute the growth of these populations to nature’s own capabilities in self-restoration and reductions in excess nutrients.  Photo Credit: Katherine Rapin

12 10, 2022

Standing Up For Water, Land And Climate: Meet 10 Indigenous Women Fighting The Line 5 Pipeline

2023-04-16T15:34:43-04:00Tags: |

Authors Osprey Orielle Lake and Katherine Quaid highlight the Indigenous women who are leading the fight against Enridge’s Line 5 pipeline expansion. Indigenous women like Jannan J. Cornstalk, Carrie Huff Chesnik, Philomena Kebec, Sandy Gokee, Rene Ann Goodrich, Jennifer Boulley, Carolyn Gougé, Gina Peltier, Lisa Ronnquist, and Debra Topping express how the Line 5 pipeline threatens non-human relatives, the culture, health and well-being of their communities and how this violence contributes to climate change. Indigenous women leaders will continue to resist fossil fuel pipelines and to defend their land, water, and communities. Photo credit: Devon Young Cupery and Cheryl Barnds/WECAN

9 10, 2022

‘The US Dammed Us Up’: How Drought Is Threatening Navajo Ties To Ancestral Lands 

2023-04-16T16:15:56-04:00Tags: |

Annette McGivney highlights the story of Candice Mendez, a Navajo woman who runs her family’s farm on the Navajo reservation in northeast Arizona. During her childhood, Mendez and her family were self-sufficient; however, by the early 1990s, nearby waterways began to dry up due to climate change. These changes in water accessibility now force Mendez to drive more than one hundred miles each week to haul water back to the farm for her animals, which have been tended by women in Mendez’s family for no less than five generations. Since the Navajo People were not considered US citizens at the time decision-making surrounding Colorado River agreements occurred, their communities remain excluded from water-use and continue to lack sufficient water infrastructure. The disproportionate impacts of climate change on the Navajo Nation make these conditions increasingly more difficult, especially as they experience even greater temperature increases than the 1.5 C increase that much of the southwestern United States has already seen. Mendez’s attempts to receive funding from the USDA to support her farm have been unsuccessful; loans like this require land ownership as collateral, and there is no private property on the reservation. Due to these significant hardships, Mendez continues to have serious concerns about her ability to maintain her family’s ranch. Photo Credit: Spencer Platt/Getty Images 

28 09, 2022

Women fighting fire with fire

2023-03-29T13:30:11-04:00Tags: |

The scale and intensity of wildfires has dramatically increased due to drier conditions from climate change and the suppression of natural fires. Women like Lenya Quinn-Davidson, fire advisor to the University of California, Margo Robbins, executive director of the Cultural Fire Management Council, and Katie Sauerbrey, fire programmer for the Nature Conservancy, are part of a larger movement of women and gender non-conforming people working in the field of prescribed burning, the intentional practice of setting fires to maintain the health of forests. Prescribing burning comes from the traditional knowledge and practice of Indigenous Peoples in North America. This practice was disrupted by colonialism when settlers suppressed natural fire. The return to prescribed burning comes at a time when people are desperate for a solution to the catastrophic wildfires raging across the continent. For prescribed burning to be successfully practiced and integrated in fire management plans, Indigenous Peoples, women, and gender non-conforming people must be included and become leaders in the fire industry. Photo credit: Jennifer Osborne/Atmos

28 07, 2022

Humanity Can’t Equivocate Any Longer. This Is A Climate Emergency

2023-03-05T23:40:26-05:00Tags: |

Rebecca Solnit and Terry Tempest Williams invite readers to join them in declaring a climate emergency, arguing that where the people lead, governments will follow. Recent natural disasters, droughts, fires, water contamination, and rising temperatures have shown us that “the future the scientists warned us about is where we live now.” Solnit and Williams explain that the climate emergency requires an immediate transition away from fossil fuels and a commitment to collectively investing in newer, more socially and environmentally just methods of production, consumption, and travel. They urge people to come together in solidarity to save the planet from further destruction for the future generations who will call it home. Photo credit: Frederic J Brown/AFP/Getty Images

12 07, 2022

Banks: The Less Visible Actors In The Fossil Fuel Industry

2023-03-29T13:04:10-04:00Tags: |

Roishetta Ozane calls attention to the less visible actors in the fossil fuel industry: banks. Ozane explains that big U.S. banks, like Morgan Stanley, are bolstering the fracked gas industry. The oil and gas industries promised to bring economic prosperity to the Gulf; instead, they have caused financial instability and increased the severity and occurrence of climate disasters like hurricanes and flooding. Local communities are paying the price. One report indicates that the proposed Plaquemines LNG facility project in Louisiana will be destroyed by inevitable storm surges. Ozane claims the banks are financing ‘sacrifice zones’ by prioritizing short term profits over the real-life impacts on local communities and the planet. These investments are financing future disasters and as the climate crisis worsens, Ozane urges banks to instead finance the transition to clean energy. Photo credit: not included

27 06, 2022

How Defeating Keystone XL Built A Bolder, Savvier Climate Movement

2023-02-02T16:24:35-05:00Tags: , |

Over ten years of resistance against the Canadian tar sands and the Keystone XL pipeline has reinvigorated the greater climate movement through coordinated strategies of direct action and coalition building. The Keystone XL resistance gained traction in 2006 following the advocacy of three women from the Deranger clan of the Athabasca Chipewyan First Nation in Alberta in partnership with the Indigenous Environmental Network. The Tar Sands Action sparked new waves of civil disobedience that became common tactics in direct actions to follow. From Maggie Gorry leading a Tar Sands Blockade in northern Texas to Joye Braun fighting for Indigenous sovereignty on her home lands of the Cheyenne River Sioux Nation in South Dakota, these grassroots direct actions were essential to the successful fight against Keystone XL. 

21 06, 2022

Louisiana’s ‘Cancer Alley’ residents in clean air fight

2023-05-26T14:32:42-04:00Tags: |

This article highlights ‘Cancer Alley’ in Louisiana, an 85-mile region of the state that has a 95% increased risk of cancer compared to the rest of the country because of air pollution, according to the EPA. The area, once known for its agriculture, consists of predominantly Black communities that are now surrounded by about 150 industrial plants. In the fall of 2021, Air Products and Chemicals announced a $4.5 billion blue hydrogen facility said to be built within the region in the next few years. The company claims that they will use carbon capture to offset the vast majority of their carbon dioxide emissions, a process which involves transporting captured carbon dioxide through a 35-mile pipeline and injecting it a mile below ground. Dr. Cynthia Ebinger, a professor of geology at Tulane University, says that Louisiana is a suitable place for the sequestration process, due to the geological composition, yet community activists remain skeptical. Dr. Beverly Wright, founder of the New Orleans-based organization, Deep South Center for Environmental Justice, and adviser to the White House Environmental Justice Advisory Council, does not believe carbon capture is the answer to the environmental issues the region faces, saying that carbon sequestration is ‘too good to be true.’ She also adds her own doubts about how the same industries that caused the pollution will not be the ones to fix it. Activists in the community continue their campaigns for environmental justice and education to the public on the risks that carbon sequestration poses. Photo Credit: Lindsey Griswold

1 06, 2022

Interview: Osprey Orielle Lake, Women’s Earth And Climate Action Network

2023-03-05T23:36:00-05:00Tags: |

In this interview, Women’s Earth and Climate Action Network (WECAN) International’s Founder and Executive Director Osprey Orielle Lake discusses WECAN’s goals, the roles of women in movements for climate action, and Stockholm+50 with writer Selva Ozelli. Lake highlights the critical work that is being done by women and feminist leaders around the globe -- work that challenges systems of oppression (patriarchy, colonialism, racism, and capitalism) and aims to create more equitable, sustainable futures for people and planet. She explains that women are at the helm of grassroots and community-led efforts to advance renewable energy, food sovereignty, rights of nature, Indigenous human rights, and feminist economies. They are also fighting back against extractive industries, fossil fuel infrastructure, deforestation, and the destruction of biodiversity. Lake credits the work of these women leaders and organizations like WECAN with advancing toward a just transition. Photo Credit: WECAN

28 05, 2022

Young L.A. Latina Wins Prestigious Environmental Prize

2023-03-29T13:02:41-04:00Tags: |

Nalleli Cobo was only nine when she became an environmental activist. After experiencing severe sickness — believed to be caused by a nearby oil extraction site owned by Allenco Energy — Cobo and her family mobilized their community to shut down the drilling site. Cobo was the designated speaker of the People Not Pozos (Oil Wells) campaign which was successful in shutting down Allenco Energy. Later, when Cobo was 14, she co-founded the South Central Youth Leadership Coalition to increase efforts against oil sites and work to phase them out completely in Los Angeles. The Coalition sued the city, citing violations of the California Environmental Quality Act and environmental racism. The city settled the lawsuit by implementing new drilling application requirements. Cobo received the Goldman Environmental prize in 2022, recognizing her environmental leadership and activism. Photo credit: Tamara Leigh Photography for the Goldman Environmental Prize

10 05, 2022

Indigenous Women Leaders Say Line 5 Reroute Project Would Be Cultural, Environmental ‘Genocide’

2023-03-29T13:01:05-04:00Tags: |

Indigenous women from the Great Lakes tribes are advocating for the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE) to review and reject the Line 5 project in northern Wisconsin. Indigenous women leaders wrote a letter, with endorsements from over 200 organizations, outlining how the Line 5 pipeline and its proposed expansion threaten treaty lands, as well as the drinking water, ecosystems, and manoomin (wild rice) that Indigenous Peoples on those lands depend on. Manoomin is a critical component of Anishinaabe cultural and spiritual identity and a major food source and economic staple for tribes. The letter also stresses that construction projects’ “man camps” may bring further danger to already vulnerable Indigenous women and girls in the area. Indigenous women explain that allowing Line 5 to proceed is cultural and environmental genocide. Photo credit: Laina G. Stebbins/Michigan Advance

6 03, 2022

Three oil companies pull out of Alaska’s Arctic national wildlife refuge

2023-03-29T12:55:36-04:00Tags: |

Olivia Rosane, a writer for EcoWatch, reports that three oil companies have canceled their lease in Alaska’s Arctic National Wildlife Refuge. The Gwich’in community and environmental groups have led a campaign to stop the drilling in the refuge. Drilling would be dangerous for the local ecosystem — which is home to 45 species of mammals — and to the global fight against climate change. Bernadette Demientieff, executive director of the Gwich’in Steering Committee explains that the Gwich’in people are spiritually and culturally connected to the land, water, and animals, and they will never stop fighting to protect Iizhik Gwats’an Gwandaii Goodlit (The Sacred Place Where Life Begins), the coastal plain of the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge. Photo credit: Johnny Johnson

22 02, 2022

Latina Moms Fighting Against Air Pollution

2023-03-29T12:57:30-04:00Tags: |

Latina mothers like Nayelly Meledez are fighting against pollution, which is causing serious health issues for their children. Reports show that 1.81 million Latinx people in the United States live within half a mile of an oil and gas facility. Meledez is a member of a community organization called Familias Unidas del Chamizal (United Families of the Chamizal), which partnered with environmental and community groups to sue the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) in 2018. In the lawsuit, the coalition of organizations demanded the EPA reassess the air quality in their community and enforce the Clean Air Act. The D.C. Circuit Court of Appeals ruled in favor of the community; shortly after, the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality appealed the decision. While the legal battle continues, the coalition’s victory in court is spreading hope in a larger movement across the country that aims to hold states and corporations accountable for environmental racism. Latina mothers like Meledez are leading environmental justice efforts to hold oil and gas facilities and governments accountable and to ensure their children and community live in a healthy environment. 

15 02, 2022

Let’s Honor Hazel Johnson’s Environmental Justice Legacy During Black History Month

2023-02-02T15:40:02-05:00Tags: |

Executive Director of People for Community Recovery, Cheryl Johnson, honors the legacy of her mother: Hazel Johnson. As an organizer in the south side of Chicago, Hazel raised awareness about inequities at the intersection of socioeconomic, environmental, and public health factors. She fought against environmental racism, housing discrimination, and toxic waste. After her husband died from lung cancer, she began noticing the high cancer rates in her neighborhood, and she exposed the connection between pollution and health problems through community advocacy. The 17 Principles of Environmental Justice she formulated continue to motivate action today. In this article, Johnson commemorates her mother’s accomplishments as an early leader of the environmental justice movement, while emphasizing the importance of women’s contributions to grassroots initiatives. She also discusses recent efforts to recognize Hazel Johnson, including three federal bills that propose celebrating every April as environmental justice month in her name, creating a memorial postage stamp, and posthumously giving her a Congressional Gold Medal. Photo Credit: People for Community Recovery

3 02, 2022

Rematriating The Land With Corrina Gould — The Native Seed Pod

2023-04-16T16:05:15-04:00Tags: |

This episode of the Native Seed Pod highlights Corrina Gould, co-founder (along with Johnella LaRose) of the Sogorea Te’ Land Trust, Tribal Chair for the Confederated Villages of Lisjan, and co-founder of Indian People Organizing for Change. In this episode, Gould discusses the importance of reinstating Indigenous women as stewards of the land and highlights one of the successful initiatives The Sogorea Te’ Land Trust has launched -- the Shuumi Tax. This tax allows people who live and work within the traditional territories of Lisjan to pay an honorary tax for using the lands, which supports the Sogorea Te’ Land Trust. Gould also elaborates on the Himmetka program, an initiative that seeks to establish resources and community centers for gathering in times of crisis in multiple locations throughout the territory. These are based in areas that are vulnerable to crises due to lack of resources and protection from the city. Gould also underscores the importance of land to food security; it must remain accessible to those in the community who do not have fresh food available. The episode ends with Gould discussing some of her planned next steps which include founding a land fund which anyone globally can donate to in order to support the purchase of traditional lands. Photo Credit: Maisie Richards and Inés Ixierda

2 02, 2022

Permanently Organized Communities.

2023-02-02T16:25:03-05:00Tags: |

In this article Movement Generation founder, Michelle Mascarenhas, details why we need place-based permanently organized communities. Specifically now, the Covid-19 pandemic has offered opportunities to build the types of local systems our movements need, including but not limited to: shifting labor to mutuality and care, creating mutual aid networks, resourcing mutual aid funds, and working towards self-governance. Photo Credit: Brooke Anderson

28 01, 2022

The Young Activist Fighting To ‘Change the Faces of Power’

2023-02-01T23:10:09-05:00Tags: |

Ilona Duverge, a housing justice activist from New York City, experienced housing insecurity as a college student and is now a movement leader for systemic and electoral change. Low-income and public housing, especially in formerly redlined areas, can be inadequate in the winter due to lack of insulation and sufficient heating but dangerous in the summer given suffocating heat. This is exacerbated by the issue of climate change. Duverge has worked at the intersection of these issues, first volunteering with local campaigns and later becoming the deputy organizing director for U.S. Representative Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez’s campaign. She is also the founder of Movement School, which trains working class activists on how they can run for office, as well as a housing and legal fellow who helps tenants of public housing learn their rights. Duverge’s advocacy for the NYC Housing Authority to upgrade their housing with climate action and clean energy in mind inspired Ocasio-Cortez to introduce the Green New Deal for Housing, which would invest in sustainable housing upgrades and create green jobs. Duverge’s vision of the climate-economy link has sparked powerful action against poverty and environmental racism. Photo Credit: Ilona Duverge  

1 01, 2022

Dolores Huerta: Workers Must Unite To Take On Climate

2023-02-02T15:42:00-05:00Tags: |

Yessenia Funes, the climate director of Atmos, interviews labor activist Dolores Huerta on how her fight for justice promotes environmental justice. Huerta discusses ways to unite labor and climate action movements, emphasizing that we need to facilitate a just transition to green jobs so oil workers have alternate employment that pays adequately while being better for the environment. She outlines suggestions for pressuring Congress and local legislatures, expanding labor unions through legal support and movement-building, and supporting workers who are transitioning industries. Above all, Huerta believes that the focus should be on supporting candidates at all levels who will be advocates for environmentally just labor policies.  Photo Credit: Brandon Barela

1 01, 2022

Indigenous Feminism Flows Through The Fight For Water Rights On The Rio Grande

2023-06-04T09:54:16-04:00Tags: |

Kalen Goodluck (Dine, Mandan, Hidatsa, and Tsimshian) and Christine Trudeau (Prairie Band Potawatomi) highlight the Rio Grande Pueblo Nations' extremely difficult path to quantified Rio Grande water rights. The negative impacts on the Rio Grande's water quality and quantity due to the climate crisis and non-Native interventions compound this struggle. Despite challenges, the Pueblo nations have hope and are taking action. In particular, three Indigenous women are highlighted for their work in fighting for quantified water rights to protect their communities, culture, and future generations. Notably, Julia Bernal (Sandia, Taos, and Yuchi-Creek Nations of Oklahoma), the director and co-founder of the Pueblo Action Alliance, which centers youth involvement in their advocacy for water rights; Judge Verna Teller (Isleta Pueblo), the Chief Justice of Isleta Pueblo who played a major role in having Isleta become the first tribal nation to create water-quality standards through the Clean Water Act; and Phoebe Suina (San Felipe and Cochiti Pueblos), hydrologist and owner of High Water Mark, an Indigenous and women-led environmental consulting company which specializes in water-resource engineering. 

13 12, 2021

Nurturing Roots, Flourishing Movement

2021-12-13T20:58:40-05:00Tags: |

This webpage introduces us to the ‘memory project’ presented by FRIDA, a youth-led fund exclusively supporting young feminist organizing which was officially set up in 2008. On International Women’s Day 2018, through a collection of stories of innovation and creation; recognition; collaboration and action; and of collective learning, FRIDA acknowledged the individual lives of inspiring women who paved the way for today’s young feminists. Through this recognition, FRIDA asserts that memories are part of their resistance, as each story relates a memory, reveals a symbol, and shares the belief that feminist organising can change the course of history. The project was developed by young feminist consultant Christy Selica Zinn who collected and translated these stories (her work is on women’s rights, youth development and organisation change in Sub-Saharan Africa); and by illustrator and project designer Pearl D’Souza, who is based in Goa, India. Photo Credit: Young Feminist Fund

13 12, 2021

Voices From The Frontlines: Rose’s Story

2021-12-13T20:55:11-05:00Tags: |

Rose Whipple from the Santee Dakota and Ho-Chunk nations is protecting her ancestral lands from pipelines in the Twin Cities area in Minnesota. Whipple describes her recent community organizing against the Line 3 pipeline which would be the largest in North America and run through rare Wild Rice beds in Anishinaabe and Dakota territory. Inspired by the solidarity of Indigenous communities at Standing Rock, Whipple has learned to use the strength of her voice as a youth leader to stand against the corporate greed of fossil fuel companies which harms the health of people and our planet. She continues to fight for community resilience and a full transition to renewable energy. Photo credit: Jaida L. Grey Eagle

13 10, 2021

Food Sovereignty: A Growing Movement

2021-12-13T21:07:14-05:00Tags: |

In this episode of the All My Relations Podcast, idigenous women Matika Wilbur and Adrienne Keene discuss food sovereignty and colonised food systems with Valerie Segrest of the Muckleshoot Indian Tribe. A Native nutrition educator, Segrest uses her specialisation in local and traditional foods to touch on topics such as breastfeeding, food sovereignty activism, the issue with the term “food desert,” and systems of colonisation through food. Photo Credit: All My Relations Podcast

13 09, 2021

Stop Ignoring Mothering As Work

2023-02-02T16:26:11-05:00Tags: |

Writer Kimberly Seals Allers believes a major part of feminism is celebrating women as a whole, with mothering as a central and unique role that should be highly valued in society. Allers explores the alarming gender inequities ingrained in social and financial systems in the United States based on the undervaluation of maternal work alongside secular work which impacts women at all levels. She advocates for women to be honored and supported across society for their specific contributions as mothers, nurturers, educators, and other roles that extend far beyond the patriarchal confines of the ability to compete with men in professional roles. Photo credit: 10’000 Hours/Getting Images

13 09, 2021

Eat Your Ethics: Rallying For Food Justice In Supply Chains With Lauren Ornelas

2021-12-13T21:26:52-05:00Tags: |

In this episode of the Amplify Podcast, host Sanchi Singh speaks with food justice activist Lauren Ornelas. Founder of the food justice nonprofit, Food Empowerment Project, Ornelas discusses her path to activism, whiteness in the veganism movement, and the ways in which COVID19 has greatly impacted food labor. Singh and Ornelas discuss the specific impacts of COVID19 food system disruptions in relation to low-income communities in both India and the United States. Video Credit: Amplify Podcast

1 09, 2021

Aurora Castillo Activates East Lost Angeles Mothers For Social And Environmental Justice

2022-05-14T17:06:13-04:00Tags: |

Aurora  Castillo is a Mexican-American activist and one of the founders of The Mothers of East Los Angeles (MELA). With organized action, she was able to stop the eighth prison of the East L.A. from being built, stop an oil pipeline from running through her community, stop a toxic waste incinerator that was being planned for the East L.A. city of Vernon, and  stop a hazardous waste treatment plant close to a high school. With MELA and her activism, companies were brought to justice, environmental responsibility encouraged and others grassroots groups were helped by a series of important legal precedents. Photo credit: Goldman Environmental Prize.

6 08, 2021

‘It could feed the world’: amaranth, a health trend 8,000 years old that survived colonization

2023-05-26T15:19:13-04:00Tags: |

Over the last few decades, amaranth has gained popularity globally. It is an extremely resilient 8,000-year-old pseudocereal indigenous to Mesoamerica, but also grown in China, India, south-east Asia, west Africa and the Caribbean. As a complete protein with all nine essential amino acids, amaranth is a nutritious source of manganese, magnesium, phosphorus, iron and antioxidants that may improve brain function and reduce inflammation. This ancient cultivation was extremely important for Native People, such as the Aztecs and Maya. In fact, amaranth was not only a source of proteins but was also used for ceremonial purposes due to these communities’ strong spiritual connection to the land and plants. Beata Tsosie-Peña, an Indigenous woman from Santa Clara Pueblo, is a coordinator of the environmental health and justice program at Tewa Women United. She is part of several networks of women across North and Central America working together to reclaim Indigenous food systems, reconnect ancient trade routes, exchange seeds and share traditional knowledge as a way of regaining sovereignty and freedom for Native People. By overcoming the ban and struggles to preserve these seeds - the Spanish outlawed amaranth when they arrived in Central America, Mexico and the south-western United States - indigenous farmers contributed to their own self-determination and created an alternative economic system in order to protect their independence and control over the food supply. Photo Credits: Hitendra Sinkar/Alamy Stock Photo

17 07, 2021

The Rebirth Of The Food Sovereignty Movement

2021-07-17T18:50:51-04:00Tags: |

The COVID-19 pandemic has sparked a wave of backyard food planting and production. Consumers are becoming increasingly aware of their local and regional food systems, and are taking initiative to support local food sovereignty projects. Doria Robinson of the urban farming project, Urban Tilth, describes the importance of CSAs in this time. Debbie Harris of Urban Adamah in Berkeley, California, points out the vital sense community urban farms create and nurture throughout times of hardship. Food sovereignty activists hope the push for local and equitable food systems continue after the end of the global pandemic. Photo Credit: Wendy Becktold

17 07, 2021

Local Indigenous People Gather To Bring Back Food Sovereignty

2021-07-17T18:33:58-04:00Tags: |

In a recent screening of the documentary “Gather,” a film recounting Indigenous food sovereignty initiatives, members of the Narragansett and Wampanoag tribes described their own local food sovereignty struggles. Hosted by Rhode Island’s first food gleaning project, Hope Harvest Rhode Island, the event featured Narragansett-Niantic speaker Lorèn Spears, the executive director of the Tomaquag Museum. Alongside other tribal members, Spears emphasized the radical power of food sovereignty initiatives to resist oppression by the dominant society through the reclamation of intergenerational Indigenous knowledge. Photo Credit: Gather

6 07, 2021

Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez Will Be The Leading Democrat On Climate Change

2021-07-06T18:27:01-04:00Tags: |

Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, recently defeating 10-year incumbent, Joe Crowley, in the Democratic Party’s primary elections, has put forth an ambitious proposal to address climate change. The objective of her plan is to transition the United States economy into one that runs on 100% renewable energy by 2035. As a means to that end, Ocasio-Cortez is advocating for a “Green New Deal,” echoing President Franklin D. Roosevelt’s 1930s New Deal program. As part of this program, the U.S. government would be required to invest heavily in the development, deployment and distribution of green energy. Particularly, since Puerto Rico is still struggling to regain reliable electricity after a deadly hurricane in 2017, the new policy could be tested there, says Ocasio-Cortez. Photo credit: Xavier Garcia/Bloomberg via Getty Images

6 07, 2021

When Women Lead: Women’s Environmental Voting Records

2021-07-06T17:48:06-04:00Tags: |

Since 1972 to present day, women in Congress have more often supported environmental protection legislation as compared to their male counterparts. This includes legislation to provide clean air and clean water as well as legislation promoting conservation for future generations. Conversely, women in Congress have also voted more often against legislation that would undo those protections. This trend holds for both political parties, Democratic and Republican, and it also holds for both chambers of Congress, the House of Representatives and the Senate. Thus, the track record of women in Congress is a promising one. Still, women are significantly underrepresented in the legislature and so rectifying this situation is necessary. Photo credit: Wikimedia Commons

6 07, 2021

A Call To Attention Liberation: To Build Abundant Justice, Let’s Focus On What Matters

2021-07-06T17:43:25-04:00Tags: |

Writer, speaker, and social justice advocate Adrienne Maree Brown discusses the power presence and attention as a force for change based on what individuals or groups choose to focus their limited energy on. She explores intentional mindset practices and group efforts that impact social justice work, including the concept of “principled struggle” that brings people closer together by fostering respectful conflict that is generative by nature. Brown also highlights “critical construction” as a key practice of co-creating thoughtful plans that build off of ideas from various perspectives provided within a coalition or group. These practices seek to reach beyond the pervasive mindset of scarcity that often dominates capitalist society to allow for collaborative, holistic methods to approach the fight for justice. Photo credit: Jeff Swensen / Getty Images

6 07, 2021

As Oil Plummets, Climate Activists Say Now Is the Time to Mobilize for a Green New Deal

2021-07-06T17:06:52-04:00Tags: |

Investigative reporter Christine Macdonald covers the 50th anniversary of Earth Day during the early stages of the COVID-19 pandemic as well as record low oil demand. Macdonald points to this historic moment as an ideal time to topple Big Oil and invest in the green energy sector as cross-sector mobilization increases across interrelated social, economic, and environmental issues. Youth organizers Naina Agrawal-Hardin of the Sunrise Movement and Sarah Goody of Youth Vs. Apocalypse discuss the challenges of moving Earth Day events online but also the enhanced solidarity occurring via online organizing during the pandemic. The Earth Day to May Day Coalition expects a larger turnout this year as COVID-19 forces more workers to see overlaps in issues surrounding public health, human rights, and climate change in a new light. Macdonald champions a Green New Deal as the way forward in this critical time. Photo credit: Jeff J Mitchell/Getty Images

6 07, 2021

New Fossil Fuel Projects Meet Indigenous Resistance in New Mexico

2021-07-06T17:04:05-04:00Tags: |

Kendra Pinto is a member of the Navajo Nation’s Eastern Agency in the Greater Chaco region of northwestern New Mexico. In response to the rapid changes occurring since the fracking boom of the past decade, she is fighting for greater protection of her lands and community. Pinto plays an active role in the group Diné Citizens Against Ruining Our Environment (Diné CARE) and has testified before Congress to demand justice from the Bureau of Land Management (BLM) and oil and gas companies who continue to receive new frack well permits. In partnership with the Sierra Club and Earthworks, she is calling for accountability by taking air quality samples to monitor methane emissions violations and other infractions from nearby frack wells. Photo credit: Randall Hyman/Truthout 

6 07, 2021

Women in the Water Sector: Working Together for the Future

2021-07-06T14:57:10-04:00Tags: |

Studies show that there is a lack of women working in the water sector, which includes a lack of women leaders. Specifically, less than twenty percent of water workers are women in the United States. But the water organizations that include female leadership tend to benefit—whether women are included in sustainability, community engagement or economic development roles. Keisha Brown, one such leader, has had extensive experience working in community-based partnerships to improve water quality while remaining accountable to the local communities the work is enacted in. According to her, the lens of social justice must be applied to the infrastructure industry and the impacts of infrastructure on people’s well-being should be carefully assessed. Photo Credit: Storm Water Solutions

6 07, 2021

Meet Your Farmer: Brooklyn Grange, The World’s Largest Rooftop Urban Farm United States

2021-07-06T14:52:59-04:00Tags: |

In Brooklyn, New York, Michelle Cashen and Anastasia Cole Plakias manage and lead Brooklyn Grange, the world’s largest rooftop urban farm. Eleven stories above the Brooklyn Navy Yard, the farm produces greens, fruits, and other edible plants. Cashen and Plakias describe their commitment to urban farming and providing fresh food without using pesticides and herbicides. Photo Credit: Local Roots NYC

13 04, 2021

Women Environmental Defenders Condemn Systemic Abuses Before The Inter-American Commission on Human Rights

2021-04-13T17:33:31-04:00Tags: |

This Earth Rights International (ERI) media release summarises the submission of a delegation of women environmental defenders from the Americas who testified before the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights. The delegation condemned widespread and unjust criminalisation and repression against defenders of rights of land, territories, and environmental protection. The testimonies presented in this thematic hearing, which denounced instances of exceptional cases of attacks against environmental defenders, was led by Columbian human rights lawyer Julian Bravo Valencia, ERI’s Amazon Program Coordinator. Several women testified, including two women from Acción Ecológica, Esperanza Martinez Yanez and Ivonne Ramos, whose experiences highlight the sexism disproportionately affecting women defenders in the Americas. At a time when the interests of corporations and their impunity in committing rights violations is rife, the hearing aimed to produce a report which presents extreme examples of human rights abuses in Ecuador, Peru, Honduras, Guatemala, Colombia, Brazil and the United States. Photo Credit: Earth Rights International

13 04, 2021

Panel Discusses Food Sovereignty, Justice

2021-04-13T17:22:41-04:00Tags: |

In Santa Barbara, California, the Santa Barbara County Food Action Network invited local environmental advocates to present a webinar on food sovereignty and food justice. The panel included Santa Barbara City Council faculty member Daniel Parra Hensel, environmental director for the Santa Ynez Band of Chumash Indians Teresa Romero, executive director of Lideres Campesinas Suguet Lopez, Community Environmental Councilmember Alhan Diaz-Correa, former farmworker Andrea Cabrea Hubbard, and Ana Rosa Rizo-Centino, a senior organizer for Food and Water Watch. A majority female panel, the panelists discussed women’s roles in food justice initiatives and local agriculture movements. They expressed gratitude for grassroots efforts and their hope to create institutional change through community organizing. Photo Credit: Courtesy Photos   

13 04, 2021

Sustainable Missoula: Food Sovereignty Is On The Line This Year

2021-04-13T17:20:19-04:00Tags: |

Based in Missoula, Montana, Indigenous ethnobotanist and Salish scientist Rose Bear Don’t Walk describes her personal relationship to Thanksgiving, while imploring readers to bring food sovereignty values to their own plates. She reclaims the settler-colonial notion of Thanksgiving by using the holiday to give thanks, spend time with family, and support her local farms— further forging a connection between herself, her family, and the land around them. Photo Credit: Missoula Current

13 04, 2021

Rebecca Newburn Garden In Richmond, CA

2021-04-13T17:18:26-04:00Tags: |

When she is not teaching middle school science and math classes, Rebecca Newburn tends to her expansive home garden in which she grows a variety of fruits, vegetables, and other plants. The co-founder of the “Richmond Grows Seed Lending Library,” Newburn understands the importance of saving and sharing seed among her close knit community of female gardeners in Richmond, California. She emphasises the stories plant varieties tell and the historical and cultural significance of seeds. Video Capture Credit: Edible East Bay

9 04, 2021

My Year Of No Shopping

2021-04-09T13:25:25-04:00Tags: |

The author Ann Patchett shares the journey to her pledge to stop shopping, inspired by her friend Elissa years earlier. The initial attraction for the idea turned into practice at the end of 2016, when she came up with an arbitrary set of rules for the year to make a serious but not draconian plan. In the article she shares all the “gleeful discoveries” of her first few months of no shopping as well as more long-term positive impacts on her lifestyle. At the end of the year, instead of ending the experiment, she decides to leave her pledge in place. Photo Credit: Wenjia Tang

9 04, 2021

Over 75 Indigenous Women Urge Biden To Stop Climate-Wrecking Pipelines And Respect Treaty Rights

2021-04-09T13:17:36-04:00Tags: |

Prior to inauguration day, over 75 Indigenous women from First Nations across the country call on President-elect Joe Biden to end destructive pipeline projects including Line 3, Keystone XL, and Dakota Access Pipeline. Signatories include Casey Camp-Horinek of the Ponca Nation and the Women's Earth and Climate Action Network (WECAN), Tara Houska, Couchiching First Nation Anishinaabe and founder of Giniw Collective, and Joye Braun of the Cheyenne River Sioux Tribe and the Indigenous Environmental Network (IEN) among dozens of other Indigenous leaders. The collective letter shares personal stories as well as research on how these pipeline projects perpetuate violence against Indigenous peoples and lands and violate key treaty rights. Photo Credit: Tiny House Warriors/Facebook

10 03, 2021

Women Run The Climate World. Just Ask Elizabeth Yeampierre.

2023-04-16T14:36:23-04:00Tags: |

In this interview, Elizabeth Yeampierre, executive director of Uprose — an organization that promotes a just transition and community development in Brooklyn, New York— discusses women’s leadership in the climate justice movement. Yeampierre describes patriarchal models of leadership as outdated and unproductive in the climate justice space. She explains that within the movement, generations of women have come together to create a new model for collective leadership in which all voices matter and all participants are leaderful. Yeampierre considers climate justice a way of keeping with the traditions of her ancestors who stewarded the land and protected the earth before her. She is dedicated to creating more just and sustainable systems that will protect the earth and frontline communities through the power of a diverse, intergenerational climate justice movement. Photo credit: Photograph by Pete Voelker

19 02, 2021

‘It’s Cultural Genocide’: Inside The Fight To Stop The Line 3 Pipeline On Tribal Lands

2022-06-27T13:05:38-04:00Tags: |

Indigenous women in Minnesota are leading the fight against the proposed expansion of the Line 3 pipeline through tribal lands and major water sources. Tara Houska, an Ojibwe woman of the Couchiching First Nation, has set up camp for the past three years in resistance. Houska, tribal attorney and founder of Giniw Collective, explains that the pipeline compromises the health of her community and violates treaty rights, perpetuating cultural genocide of Indigenous communities. She is working with congresswoman Ilhan Omar to increase pressure on President Biden to take urgent action to halt the dangerous trajectory of pipeline expansion, including revoking water-crossing permits for future preventative measures. In addition, local organizer and member of the Leech Lake Band of Ojibwe, Nancy Beaulieu, calls for tribal leaders to be held accountable for not providing prior informed consent to their members about the pipeline project. Photo credit: Jenn Ackerman and Tim Gruber/The Guardian

18 02, 2021

To Keep Indigenous Women Safe Joe Biden Must Go Beyond Keystone XL

2022-06-24T15:16:54-04:00Tags: |

In this article written by Anya Zoledziowski, Indigenous community leaders call on President Biden to follow the decision to end construction of the Keystone XL pipeline with more direct action to protect Indigenous women. Angeline Cheek, member of the Fort Peck Assiniboine and Sioux Tribes in Montana, is relieved that there won’t be an influx of transient workers or man camps in her community due to the pipeline cancellation. However, Cheek and Carla Fredericks, an enrolled member of Fort Berthold and the executive director of the Christensen Fund, demand President Biden follow his other campaign commitments to protect Indigenous women from high risks of sexual assault and trafficking by reauthorizing the Violence Against Women Act (VAWA). They call for safety and accountability measures to end the disproportionate violence which is often inflicted by transient infrastructure workers who are non-Indigenous members. Photo Credit: Kokipasni Youth Group/VICE World News

16 02, 2021

Get To The Bricks: The Experiences Of Black Women Foom New Orleans Public Housing After Hurricane Katrina

2021-02-16T20:43:53-05:00Tags: |

The report explores the experiences of almost 200 black women who were living in “The Big Four”- four large housing projects within the city of New Orleans - when Hurricane Katrina made landfall in 2005. They were displaced from their prior homes due to the hurricane and the closure and demolition of the public housing units. This case shows that the experiences of black women in public housing were not taken into consideration when developing a plan for post-Katrina recovery. U.S. policies were implemented in a manner that took away opportunities, supports, and infrastructures from low-income women and their families most in need of a reliable safety net as they sought to recover from a catastrophic set of disasters and endure the Great Recession. Including the various experiences and voices of these women in the policy discussion going forward will ensure that future disasters do not perpetuate the marginalization of the most disadvantaged members of our communities.

23 12, 2020

Going Viral

2023-02-02T16:00:47-05:00Tags: |

Environmental activist Leah Thomas discusses her experience going viral in May of 2020, when she posted on Instagram calling for solidarity between the environmental movement and Black Lives Matter. Her graphic outlined a vision of “Intersectional Environmentalism” – an approach to advocacy that centers people as well as the planet, acting upon the interconnectedness of injustice and confronting social inequity. Thomas reflects upon the post’s rapid virality and the power that social media has to build movements and motivate collective action. She emphasizes the potential for social media-driven knowledge and empowerment, while showing the power that individuals have to inspire change. Photo Credit: Cher Martinez

15 12, 2020

Focus on Housing and Jobs or the Climate Fight ‘Goes Nowhere’

2023-11-28T21:50:46-05:00Tags: , |

Elizabeth Yeampierre, executive director of Uprose, has been leading a movement to stop new developments in Brooklyn’s Sunset Park neighborhood that would displace local communities. She has presented an alternative project that would give back to the community and help meet climate goals. Yeampierre has proposed that instead of the waterfront being bought and rebuilt by private developers, which would result in gentrification and the displacement of many BIPOC communities in the neighborhood, that a bustling green industry hub be built. This would support the shift to renewable energy through development of wind turbines, solar panels, and low-carbon technology, while providing fair salaries for neighborhood residents and also benefit immigrants and undocumented individuals without much formal education. These developments would sustain and develop communities that are at increased risk from the climate crisis. Photo credit: Pete Voelker

20 11, 2020

Jilian Hishaw Wants To Help Black Farmers Stay On Their Land

2020-11-20T17:54:00-05:00Tags: |

Jilian Hishaw’s organisation, Family Agriculture and Resource Management Services (FARMS) is advocating for black farmer rights not only for today, but also for future generations. With only 2% of the country’s farm population consisting of black farmers, the services this organisation provides aids vulnerable farmers who often face discrimination by the USDA and who lose land at a rate of 30,000 acres per year. These services are available for all farmers from historically disadvantaged group in South Eastern states in the United States and their legal and technical assistance, including grant application help, fundraisers, agricultural law and foreclosure help, aid in retaining ownership of their land. Furthermore, the FARMS to Food Bank program aims to support farmers in selling surplus produce and meat at a reduced price to the food banks in their communities, thus also contributing to food insecurity solutions in these areas. Photo credit: Jilian Hishaw

11 11, 2020

Minnesota’s New Climate Justice Leaders

2023-03-29T12:53:50-04:00Tags: |

Newly elected women in Minnesota are providing hope for those fighting against Enbridge Line 3, an oil pipeline from that stretches from Alberta, Canada to Wisconsin, United States. State Senator Lindsey Port believes she has a duty to bring voices from her community to the Capitol to highlight those most affected by the issues and make space for them at the table. This includes hearings at the Capitol, social media campaigns, and policy-making. Those at the local level fighting against Enridge Line 3 believe it is helpful to have these women who can exert influence and pressure the governor to achieve their goal in stopping the oil pipeline. Photo credit: Fibonacci Blue/Flickr

9 09, 2020

Wildfires And Weather Extremes: It’s Not Coincidence, It’s Climate Change

2020-09-09T22:16:53-04:00Tags: |

The acceleration of forest fires in the West has made fire season 2 to 3 months longer than it was just a few decades ago. Climate change and wildfires are linked by mechanisms like higher temperatures, increased aridity, invasive species, earlier melting of snowpack etc. Climate change is not the single responsible factor for these fires and the natural ecosystem drivers of fire should be recognized.

9 09, 2020

Wildfire Smoke Threatens Air Quality Across The West

2020-09-09T22:13:58-04:00Tags: |

In this article, Bonnie Holmes-Gen, chief of the health and exposure assessment branch in the research division of the California Air Resources Board shares the links between health problems and wildfire smoke. During the COVID-19 pandemic, unhealthy air quality is a serious public health emergency. This summer, as California’s coronavirus cases continue to surge and the state struggles to implement safety measures, wildfire season is worsening air quality, complicating evacuation plans, perpetuating unjust impacts on Black, Brown, and Native communities, and further endanger those already at greatest risk of COVID-19.    

8 09, 2020

California Wildfires: Intersecting Crises & How To Respond

2020-09-09T22:23:23-04:00Tags: |

During a public health crisis centered around a respiratory disease, the last thing we need is more pollution that worsens respiratory problems and deepens already disproportionately higher risks of COVID-19 for Black, Brown, Indigenous, and low-income communities. While getting real about the root issues is urgently important, millions of Californians are being forced to deal with the immediate task of safety and survival. Greenpeace created a California Wildfire Crisis Emergency Response Guide to help communities stay safe and healthy during these uncertain times. Photo Credit: David McNew / Greenpeace

8 09, 2020

Earth Defenders Warn Against Democrats Undermining ‘Rights of Nature’ Movement With Watered-Down Approach

2023-01-25T12:37:01-05:00Tags: |

Jessica Corbett explains that although Rights of Nature activists are encouraged by the Democratic Party’s recent acknowledgement of their demands, they are concerned that the policies that follow might be based on “watered down” understandings of the Rights of Nature movement. Because the movement advocates deep system change, it is unlikely that a corporate-friendly DNC platform could align with its aims; in fact, it could potentially undermine the transformative change that activists have worked so hard to enact and marginalize (or ignore) the voices and expertise of Indigenous Nations and grassroots organizations. Corbett mentions the true aims of the Rights of Nature movement will be centered in the upcoming 2020 documentary, Invisible Hand. Executive producer Mark Ruffalo has said that the documentary will demonstrate "how to fight the forces that put profit above all else while addressing the root cause of our flawed system." Photo credit: Invisible Hand/Flickr 

6 09, 2020

In California Wine Country, Undocumented Grape Pickers Forced To Work In Fire Evacuation Zones

2020-10-05T16:49:57-04:00Tags: |

Amid pandemic economic impact, many Latin American Indigenous immigrants have no choice but to do farm work in hazardous conditions during wildfires, increasing their vulnerability to COVID-19 due to their exposure to smoke. Movimiento Cultural de la Unión Indígena, an Indigenous workers’ group, is pushing for appropriate working regulations, in addition to providing economic and social assistance, especially to the undocumented suspicious of federal support. Photo credit: Justin Sullivan/Getty Images.

3 09, 2020

What Should We Know About Wildfires In California

2020-09-09T22:57:12-04:00Tags: |

This Greenpeace article lists trends impacting the occurrence of both forest and wildland fires today and solutions to those trends. The climate crisis is fueling extreme weather events, including an exceptionally dry winter and record-breaking heat waves which leave more dried up wildland vegetation to kindle the fires.  Despite this, the Trump Administration and the logging industry regularly use wildfires as opportunities to make the case for more logging under the guise of fuels reduction and fire prevention. Photo Credit: 2016 Erskine Fire in Central California, © US Forest Service

30 08, 2020

Indigenous Activists Brace For Worsening Wildfires Under Climate Change

2020-11-20T17:37:27-05:00Tags: |

The Three Sisters Collective in Santa Fe, New Mexico is leading local efforts to address climate change impacts in Indigenous communities. Carrie Wood, member of the Navajo Nation, and Christina M. Castro, member of the Taos and Jemez pueblos, are two of the women who have been supporting critical local responses such as making air purifiers for elders in the Nambé, Tesuque and Pojoaque pueblos who have dealt with excessive smoke from the Medio Fire combined with other wildfires in the western US. Their support stems from long-held mutual aid traditions led by Indigenous women, stressing the importance of investing in Indigenous knowledge and tribal fire management techniques for community resilience. Photo credit: Cody Nelson/NM Political Report

13 08, 2020

The Women Battling Wildfires And Breaking Barriers In The American Wilderness

2020-09-09T19:33:02-04:00Tags: |

Hannah Gross is one of 10,000 female wild land firefighters in the United States. In this historically male-dominated field women often face implicit bias, sexism, and gatekeepers who didn’t make them welcome.  Various initiatives have been created to increase the number of women in fire, foster their leadership capabilities, and improve their operational confidence in the field. Thanks to some of these initiatives women are  present in every facet of the wildland fire world. Photo Credit: Alex Potter

10 07, 2020

Water Protectors Celebrate As Dakota Access Pipeline Ordered To Shut Down

2020-10-10T19:55:28-04:00Tags: |

LaDonna Brave Bull Allard, an elder of the Standing Rock Sioux Tribe and founder of Sacred Stone Camp and Tara Houska, Ojibwe lawyer and founder of the Giniw Collective are interviewed by reporter Amy Goodman after the Dakota Access Pipeline (DAPL) is ordered to shut down by August 5, 2020. LaDonna Brave Bull Allard has opened her home in North Dakota to supporters from the beginning of the resistance in order to protect sacred sites, water sources, and the health of her community members. She has joined forces with Indigenous leaders and water protectors from around the world, many of whom have faced similar harms from extractive industry. Tara Houska asserts that the shutdown of this massive pipeline sends a critical message to the fossil fuel industry that these dangerous projects will not be tolerated and that a regenerative green economy is non-negotiable. Photo credit: Democracy Now! (video screenshot)

24 06, 2020

Where Do You Draw The Boundaries Of Home? Understanding Bioregions Might Give You An Idea

2023-03-05T23:49:37-05:00Tags: |

Carlita del Sol explains the concepts of bioregionalism and place-based governance. In pre-colonial times, Indigenous Peoples lived on their ancestral territories for thousands of years, and hyper-localized knowledges of their regions were passed down through generations. These knowledges allowed Indigenous Peoples to live in reciprocal relationship with the land, taking care of the region and its “lifesources,” while also depending on the land, animals, and local food systems for their own survival. del Sol includes a list of steps that people can take to re-orient themselves with the bioregions that they are already in relationship with. Photo credit: Mervin Windsor (Haisla-Heiltsuk), from Decolonial Atlas

29 05, 2020

Gardens Have Pulled America Out Of Some Of Its Darkest Times. We Need Another Revival

2021-02-16T20:31:45-05:00Tags: |

As the COVID-19 pandemic ravages the United States’ economy, issues of food security have been magnified. Consequently, the importance of local gardens have been emphasized. From Victory Gardens during the first and second world war, to the emergence of urban vegetable gardens throughout US cities in the 1970s and 1980s, the United States has a rich history of local gardening initiatives. The pandemic has forced Americans to re-evaluate the many way local gardens benefit a community. In Richmond, California, Doria Robinson of Urban Tilth provides 227 families with weekly CSA vegetable shares. Serving low-income residents in a city with only one grocery store per 100,000 residents, Robinson’s work at Urban Tilth makes a great difference in the local community, especially in light of COVID-19. Photo Credit: Karen Washington 

23 11, 2019

Ocasio-Cortez Demands Solar Company Rehire Workers Fired After Unionizing With Green New Deal in Mind

2020-10-23T23:05:45-04:00Tags: |

Representative Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez is the lead sponsor of the Green New Deal, which includes pro-justice and worker provisions in its effort to transition from fossil fuels to renewable energies. The need for these provisions became evident when twelve workers were fired from Bright Power, a solar energy company, after stating their intent to unionize. Ocasio-Cortez demands that Bright Power be held accountable and re-hire these twelve workers. She recognizes the danger of oil barons becoming renewable energy barons and continuing to exploit workers, regardless of the seemingly progressive purpose of their company. The Sunrise Movement and Senator Bernie Sanders also voiced their agreement with Ocasio-Cortez. Photo Credit: Bill Clark

14 10, 2019

On Indigenous People’s Day, Anishinaabeg Leaders March Against Enbridge’s $7.5 Billion Oil Pipeline

2020-11-20T17:50:08-05:00Tags: |

Anishinaabeg leaders march in resistance to the proposed Line 3 tar sands oil pipeline in Clearbrook, Minnesota on Indigenous People’s Day. Tara Houska, member of the Anishinaabeg Nation and Founder of Ginew Collective, leads the march with more than 200 supporters to protect Ojibwe culture and treaty rights along with key water sources that would be compromised in the Great Lakes region with the potential to harm millions. The pipeline construction company, Enbridge, faces several lawsuits after the environmental review was overturned due to high risks to waterways. Houska and other Indigenous leaders continue to garner greater support for resisting construction and protecting their ancestral lands. Photo credit: Amelia Diehl/In These Times

3 07, 2019

Nurdle by Nurdle, Citizens Took on A Billion-Dollar Plastic Company — and Won

2020-11-20T17:34:49-05:00Tags: |

A federal judge recently ruled that Formosa Plastics, a petrochemical company outside Port Lavaca, Texas, can be held liable for violating state and federal water pollution laws. The company could face a penalty of up to $162 million. Thanks to data collected by resident volunteers, the nonprofit San Antonio Bay Estuarine Waterkeeper brought a lawsuit against the company in 2017. According to the lawsuit, the company violated its environmental permits for years, dumping millions of small plastic pellets - called nurdles - into Lavaca Bay. Among the volunteers is Diane Wilson, a retired shrimper who has been trying to get Formosa to stop dumping in the bay since the early ’90s. Since the trial started, pollution levels haven’t changed, so she keeps gathering evidence with her kayak. Giving up is not an option for her. Photo credit: Wikimedia

11 06, 2019

4 Activists Explain Why Migrant Justice Is Climate Justice

2020-12-02T20:13:50-05:00Tags: |

The four climate justice advocates Maya Menezes, Nayeli Jimenez, Niria Alicia and Thanu Yakupitiyage share their perspectives on the strong connections between the climate crisis and issues of migration and asylum. Drawing from different examples and experiences, they make a strong case to address the climate crisis in the broader framework of anti-capitalist and anti-colonial struggles and to stand in solidarity with movements to protect the rights of indigenous people, migrants and asylum seekers. Photo Credits: Getty Images

31 05, 2019

Environmental Justice Activists Are Leading a Green New Deal Revolution

2023-03-29T11:18:42-04:00Tags: |

The Green New Deal is often considered ambitious, yet for Indigenous communities and people of color across the United States, it is an essential catalyst for organizing and advocacy. The resolution, which highlights the need for action grounded in “justice and equity,” centers around the need to consult and include frontline groups most gravely impacted by climate change. This article explains the significance of the Green New Deal by following activists who are implementing justice-based environmental initiatives across America. Jayeesha Dutta works with Another Gulf is Possible, an organization uplifting women of color’s voices on environmental issues in the Gulf South. She shares her perspective on how to help communities in regions dominated by oil companies, and how to implement a just transition to a regenerative economy. Colette Pichon Battle, the director of the Gulf Coast Center for Law and Policy, discusses her vision for rebuilding infrastructure, creating inclusive green jobs, and leading grassroots change when progressive climate legislation is lacking. Photo Credit: Laura Borealis

23 05, 2019

How Black Farmers Are Trying To End Centuries Of Racism In America’s Food System

2023-11-08T12:36:18-05:00Tags: , |

Kiesha Cameron is part of a movement of Black farmers pushing for reparations and equal opportunity in agriculture. America’s wealth and power is due to the hard work of exploited enslaved people. Their work in tobacco and cotton fields in today’s terms would have been a multi-billion dollar industry. Now, systemic racism has pushed Black farmers to the margins of these practices through violence, lack of legal support, prejudice, and poverty—in turn, barring them from opportunities to create sustainable, wealth-building communities. Savi Horne, the director of the Land Loss Prevention Project, emphasizes the need for land rights to be central in reparations. This is a complicated process and there is much more work that needs to be done on governmental levels. Cameron, Horne, and many others are working to reclaim farming for Black communities. They are taking back power and control to combat centuries of exploitation and racism, instead replacing it with autonomy and healing. Photo credit: Lynsey Weatherspoon/HuffPost

16 05, 2019

These Five Black LGBTQ+ Activists Are Literally Saving The Planet

2020-11-07T17:58:13-05:00Tags: |

Explore what the environmental justice movement looks like led by those most impacted. Meet 5 Black LGBTQ+ community organizers and activists Asha Carter (she/her), Dominique Hazzard (she/her), Dean Jackson (they/them), Jeaninne Kayembe (she/her,they/them), and  Rachel Stevens (she/her,they/them). Follow their stories of activism to learn how creative and impactful movements within their communities have responded to healing environmental racism. Photo Credit: Asha Carter

15 05, 2019

‘It’s my homeland’: the trailblazing Native lawmaker fighting fossil fuels

2023-03-29T11:50:38-04:00Tags: |

Deb Halaand, a member of the Laguna Pueblo tribe, became one of the first two Native American women to be elected to Congress when she won her campaign for representative of New Mexico’s 1stCongressional District. After her victory, Rep. Halaand focused her attentions on the controversy surrounding Utah’s Bears Ears national monument. The monument is home to many sites sacred to Native American peoples but in December 2017, the Trump Administration declared the boundaries would be reduced for the benefit of oil, gas and mining industries. In response, Halaand proposed various bills for the protection of national monuments but the future of these bills remains uncertain. Halaand’s effort are not solely concentrated on protecting native land but also combating climate change. Photo credit: Jason Andrew/The Guardian