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Category archives for Activism

The Ocean and President Trump

Like a rogue wave the election victory of Donald Trump for President left about half the nation stunned and the other half giddy with foam.  Among the worried parties environmentalists are girding for a long series of battles around climate and expected attacks on keystone agencies, executive orders and legislation including the EPA, emission standards…

Standing Rock Sioux Tribe’s Statement on U.S. Army Corps of Engineers Decision to Not Grant Easement

After months of protest and asking for their concerns over water safety, cultural preservation, and historic treaty rights to be heard, the Standing Rock Sioux are celebrating the U.S. Army’s decision not to grant the current easement to the Dakota Access Pipeline.

Insisting on Truth – Bhopal and Beyond

“I cut all the pictures out of my textbook…they were so…” My friend Anu doesn’t finish her thought. She doesn’t have to. I know the words that she can use, but they will never fully articulate the horrific, gruesome, tragic images depicting the event of the 1984 Bhopal Gas Disaster, considered by many to be the…

Our ‘National Disgrace’: The Crime at Standing Rock

As the Standing Rock Sioux and their supporters have “gathered peacefully and exercised their constitutional rights, they have been tear-gassed, pepper-sprayed, beaten, and assaulted with water cannons. This treatment of Native Americans is a national disgrace.”—Jon Waterhouse

Reframing Ocean Conservation in this Post-Election Era

Given the election, it seems wise to relinquish expectations of US federal leadership on ocean or climate policy. Our anti-science (among other deeply concerning antis) president-elect and his appointees have sent clear signals about their disregard for our environment and the ethos of sustainability. Yet, a healthy ocean is critical to food security, a stable…

Why Doubt Invasive Species Impacts?

Invasive alien species are now found on every corner of the planet and rank higher than climate change as a current threat to endangered species. So then why, despite all the scientific evidence of negative impacts from invasive species, would people be resistant to taking action against them?

Using Technology to Combat Wildlife Crime

“Wildlife rangers now have the help they’ve desperately needed.” says Colby Loucks, WWF’s wildlife crime technology lead. “This groundbreaking technology allows them to search for poachers 24 hours a day, from up to a mile away, in pitch darkness. It’s upping the game in our fight to stop wildlife crime across the region.”

Seeds of our Futures, Seeds of our Past

Dear Educators, I hope this message finds you well. I want to thank you for the work you are doing — sharing your knowledge and unyielding energy with your students. You are changing the world. And the world is changing quite a bit around us. While many of us had the opportunity last week to voice…

All Plants Are Medicine; We Just Need To (re)Learn How

“All plants are medicine,” Dr. Jeetpal Negi, the herbal gardener at Navdanya, exclaims proudly with a hint of mystery to his voice. Dr. Negi bends down to examine a seemingly mundane but prolific weed, “this is used for eye health,” he says before popping the small white diamond-shape flower in his mouth. He stretches above his…

Challenging Perceptions: Part 1

Here’s a screenshot my friend sent me before I arrived in Joburg. It sums up what I had heard a few times about the city:  There’s some truth to the narrative that Johannesburg is unsafe. The fences struck me right away. Nearly every house has a fence around it, most topped by barbed (and sometimes…

President of Colombia to Expand Protection in the Malpelo Hope Spot

By: Shilpi Chhotray, Mission Blue Communications Strategist Over 300 miles off the Pacific coast of Colombia lies Malpelo Island whose clear waters are teeming with colorful marine life. The driving force behind the success of the Malpelo Hope Spot is the community of ocean advocates and citizen scientists promoting its protection. Sandra Bessudo, Marine Biologist…

Ross Sea MPA creation means the last pristine place in the ocean is finally protected

The pursuit to establish a marine protected area in Antarctica brought me to the Ross Sea four times. It brought my wife, and eventually my daughter, whom we named after a penguin. – John Weller

Marigolds: an (agri)cultural staple

The first seeds I ever saved were marigold seeds. At the time, I was a garden educator at a small neighborhood environmental nonprofit in Camden, New Jersey. The Center for Environmental Transformation(CFET) is situated in the South Waterfront neighborhood, an old urban community enclosed by industrial facilities which not only restrict access to the nearby waterfront, but…

Solving Humanity’s Grand Challenges Requires a Healthy Ocean

Human well-being and human rights are inextricably tied to the health of the ocean, yet ocean conservation work is often isolated. Last month, as the United National General Assembly focused on tackling the grand challenges represented by the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), both the ocean goal (aka Goal 14, “Life Under Water”) and me, as…

Our Seed Stories – a Participatory Educational Media Project this School Year

Join me this school year on my journey to India to learn about seed saving, community food systems, and how to cultivate a future for biodiversity!