Jeanne Dodds, [email protected], (360) 321-1944
Leda Huta, [email protected], (202) 320-6467
Washington, D.C.—The Endangered Species Coalition released Justly Biodiverse: Nature’s Lifeline for the Health of All Communities today. This 64-page report is the culmination of two years of study to assess more fully how inadequate policies and racism cause undue harm and burdens. As such, it focuses on the benefits biodiversity provides to people, while detailing how systemic environmental racism denies biodiversity’s benefits to communities of color. The Justly Biodiverse report also includes recommendations to connect environmental justice to supporting biodiversity. Divided into twelve sections and inclusive of more than 16 community members, advocates and academics, the report offers specific examples of imperiled species and habitats that demonstrate ways in which healthy biodiversity benefits humanity and safeguards communities.
“Biodiversity is our life support system,” said Leda Huta, Executive Director of the Endangered Species Coalition. “We aren’t separate from nature. It’s fundamental failing to protect biodiversity is a failure to protect human rights. We live and rely on Earth—a natural planet that ensures we breathe, eat, drink, sleep, and play.”
“Disparate impacts from environmental contamination, and the most adverse impacts of climate change and biodiversity loss, affect communities of color first and worst because of historical racism,” said Endangered Species Coalition Board Member Dr. Adrienne L. Hollis, PhD, JD. “To address these inequities and foster thriving, healthy communities, we must address the paucity of biodiversity and environmental protections. Without action, we face extreme weather events like coastal and chronic flooding, sea-level rise, and increased temperatures—our people and our planet will continue to suffer.”
The full report, which includes recommendations on holistically integrating biodiversity protections, is available online for downloading at endangered.org/justlybiodiverse.