An alarming new report by Global Witness (an environmental and human rights NGO) reveals that environmental activists are being killed at a rate of one per week. According to an article on The Guardian about the report, last month was one of the deadliest for Filipino activists, while environmental defenders working in the America’s face the highest risk of death for their activities.
Those statistics are further reinforced by recent updates from Prize winners Fr. Edwin Gariguez (2012) and Francisco Pineda (2011), both of whom warn of growing threats in their regions.
Gariguez reports that extrajudicial killings of environmental activists are growing out of control in the Philippines; while members of Francisco Pineda’s team at Environmental Committee of Cabañas recently received death threats. Pineda has already lost three of his colleagues to murder.
Violence against environmental activists is a disturbing issue that hits home for all Goldman Prize recipients, and we at the Prize continue to stand in solidarity with all grassroots environmental heroes who face grave risks to defend the earth.