No-one embodied the courage of those defending their land, the natural environment and the future of their people and the planet, more than Berta Cáceres, Honduran environmental activist and indigenous leader, who was murdered in March 2016, a year after winning the prestigious Goldman Environmental prize.
Out of 227 land and environmental activists murdered in 2020, according to Global Witness, at least 163 of these killings were in Latin America, with Colombia (65) the most dangerous country.
This new blog series will document some of the work of environmental defenders in different countries, highlighting both the dangers and the achievements.
The series is curated for LAB by Katie Jones, who lived and worked in Mexico as an English teacher in the state of Puebla. Until the Covid-19 pandemic took hold, she was teaching in Costa Rica and was an active member of a local NGO aiming to assist the quality of education for children in an underprivileged barrio. She worked as an investigator for InSight Crime, a foundation specialised in the study of organised crime in Latin America and the Caribbean. She is currently studying a masters in Latin American Studies at the University of Oxford.