by Sharon H. Chang
Girls and women, Indigenous people and land practices, and small organic farms are among the top solutions to ending climate change. Yet women and gender diverse people have almost no voice on big agribusiness boards while people of color are often rendered entirely voiceless as America’s sustainable food movement, dominated by white people, ignores the food, climate, and environmental injustices faced by communities of color. In this special Emerald series, photographer and writer Sharon H. Chang introduces the women and nonbinary farmers of color at the heart of Washington’s agrarian revival movement who are moving the needle towards not only a future livable planet, but a socially just one.
It is estimated up to 29 percent of global greenhouse gas emissions come from unsustainable food systems, a big chunk of which comes from large-scale, mono-cropping farms in the global north. According to a comprehensive report released by the United Nations, combatting climate change will require major changes to management of farmland and food. Project Drawdown, a research organization that identifies the most viable solutions to the current climate crisis, asserts it will mean valuing Indigenous wisdom and farming. Why? Because Indigenous people, who have been stewarding the land since time immemorial, have been practicing and developing sustainable agriculture for thousands of years. Continue reading Farming For Change: Native Women’s Legacy of Sustainability