The Stream

Why are environmental activists under attack?

New report looks at range of threats faced by environmental defenders who stand up to extractive industries.

On Wednesday, August 7 at 19:30 GMT:
A new human rights report says 164 environmental activists around the world were killed last year, and countless more are being silenced through violent attacks, intimidation or unfair criminalisation. The report by UK-based Global Witness highlights the threats indigenous communities in particular face from resource extraction industries and the growing trend by governments to label environmental protectors as eco-terrorists.

The report examined 19 countries and found that most of the activist killings in 2018 involved those who spoke out against mining industries. Deadly attacks were also linked to activists protesting hydropower projects and land disputes with agribusinesses. The Philippines topped the list with 30 victims, followed by Colombia with 24, India with 23, and Brazil with 20. 

In this episode, we’ll look at the struggles faced by environmental activists and ask what should be done to protect their work. Join the conversation.

Read more:
Enemies of the state? How governments and businesses silence land and environmental defenders – Global Witness
Indigenous people are being killed for protecting their land. But we will not be silent. – Washington Post