Leydy Pech, an indigenous Mayan beekeeper, successfully halted Monsanto’s planting of genetically modified soybeans in southern Mexico.
In Oaxaca, where unsustainable land-use practices have made it one of the world’s most highly-eroded areas, Jesús León Santos led a land renewal program that employs ancient indigenous practices to transform depleted soil into arable land.
Isidro Baldenegro was jailed for 15 months for organizing protests against illegal logging in the Sierra Madre Mountains and his work to defend the forests, lands and rights of indigenous people.
Along with colleague Teodoro Cabrera, Rodolfo Montiel Flores was arrested and tortured for organizing peaceful protests of logging that was devastating farmlands. Both men were jailed for more than two years on trumped-up charges.
Undeterred by local drug lords, Edwin Bustillos blocked logging in the Sierra Madre despite violent attempts on his life and founded the Advisory Council of the Sierra Madre to preserve the ecosystems that are home to the Tarahumara and Tepehuan communities.