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Sustainival – Environmental Justice is Social Justice is Economic Justice
October 13, 2020 @ 5:00 pm - 6:00 pm
Sustainability has been a field and movement with a history of exclusion and white supremacy. Oftentimes the sustainability narrative centers the importance of resource conservation and environmental health but lacks the critical component of social justice. These five (5) speakers are dedicating their careers to uplifting the concept of intersectional environmentalism through media and content creation. Join us for an interactive talk with incredible climate justice advocates that are making environmentalism a whole lot more equitable and a whole lot more fun!
Aditi Mayer [she/hers] is a sustainable fashion blogger, photojournalist, and labor rights activist whose work explores the intersections of style, sustainability, and social justice. Seeing fashion’s disproportionate effects on communities of color globally, she began her blog, ADIMAY.com, after the Bangladesh Rana Plaza factory in 2014. Her platform looks at the fashion industry through a lens of decolonization and intersectional feminism, created in order to bring inclusivity to the sustainable fashion movement.
Aditi’s Motivation for Climate Justice Work
I am motivated by the desire to make the ties between social and environmental injustices explicit, and interrogate the systems that dually hurt both people and the planet. All of this is inspired by my own background as a South Asian woman, being the daughter of immigrants, and the granddaughter of farmers.
Kristy Drutman (she/her) is a Filipina environmentalist and digital strategist based on Ohlone Land (aka the Bay Area) who wants to educate the world one post at a time about environmental justice through her podcast and media series, Brown Girl Green. She interviews environmental leaders and advocates about diversity and inclusion as well as creative solutions to the climate crisis. Kristy believes that culturally-nuanced storytelling is critical in building collective power and resilience within our communities, and aims to create content that empowers people to find their own voice in the fight for an environmentally just future.
Kristy’s Motivation for Climate Justice Work
I am motivated to do this work because there are environmental land defenders from countries across the global south being killed protecting and fighting for climate justice. As someone with privilege, a platform, and passion, I feel responsible to provide space, resources, and inspiration to people around the world to take action on climate change. As more lives and communities are at stake, it is imperative for those of us with the means and networks necessary to mobilize and empower people around us to act.
Isaias Hernandez is the creator of Queer Brown Vegan where he makes accessible environmental education content. As a Queer, Brown, and Vegan environmentalist, he seeks to provide a safe space for other like-minded environmentalists to engage in the discourse of the current climate crisis.
Isaias’ Motivation for Climate Justice Work
Doing environmental work has always been my passion because as someone who grew up living in a community that experienced environmental injustice, I had so much fear, sadness, confusion, and anger built inside me that it was hard to navigate. I’ve always believed that environmental knowledge should never be privatized and it should be available to everyone who seeks this information.
Pattie Gonia (she/her/hers) is an environmental advocate, outdoor community voice, and backpacking drag queen (and yes, Pattie really hikes in heels.) Our community exists to uplift LGBTQ people and allies in the outdoors and to exist as a platform to give other voices and organizations all the shine in the world. The Pattie Gonia team carries out this mission by creating uplifting and ethical social media content, hosting community events, and fundraising for non profit organizations ($150,000 raised last year LGBTQ and outdoor nonprofits, $125,000 for Black and BIPOC led organizations to date in 2020).
Outside of heels Wyn Wiley (he/him), a 28 year old born and raised Nebraskan, has worked as a photographer, speaker, teacher, and creative director for brands including Adidas, Red Bull and Disney as well as a number of non-profits around the world. Last year, on a weeklong backtracking trip in Colorado, Wyn put on high heels and strutted for the first time as Pattie Gonia, her first video garnering more than 100 million views across platforms.
Since the birth of Pattie Gonia, Wyn/Pattie have focused their efforts on their personal journey of using drag as a way to explore self identity, sexuality, and the natural world. And so, the journey of Pattie is both extremely personal and also exists as a social and environmental justice platform.
Pattie Gonia’s Motivation for Climate Justice Work
What motivates me to do this work is knowing that this is the only planet with a Beyoncé on it. We should probably get to work to save her and mother nature, too.
Lauren Ritchie is a 19-year-old climate activist, writer, model, podcast host, and student from The Bahamas studying Sustainable Development and Political Science at Columbia University. She is the creator of The Eco Gal a digital platform that educates on global climate justice, promotes intersectional climate action, and seeks to make sustainable living more accessible and inclusive by amplifying the voices of marginalized communities. She is also a writer and content strategist for Brown Girl Green, a Youth Ambassador for Plastic Pollution Coalition, an ambassador for the Global Wildlife Conservation, and the co-host of the podcast Black Girl Blueprint, a platform to center the voices and celebrate the accomplishments of young Black women in a vast array of fields.
Lauren’s Motivation for Climate Justice Work
I was born on a small island in The Bahamas. Although the focus of my work lies within promoting global climate and social justice, the true motivation for my work is to protect my island and my country at large. Grand Bahama Island has borne the brunt of climate impacts in the form of extreme natural disasters for the past four years and will continue to be susceptible to shifts in the climate for many years to come without the resources to appropriately adapt. The reason why I, and so many other environmentalists of color, continue to expend our time and energy into a field that often feels like it wasn’t made for our voices and stories is that we are fighting for the survival of our communities and our loved ones.