Two-Spirit activists explain why the LGBT+ community needs to unite against the climate emergency

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1/15/22

Two-Spirit environmental activists have shared how LGBT+ people can use their power to fight climate change and better the planet for future generations. Weather and climate disasters in the US took more than 500 lives and cost over $100 billion in 2021, according to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Association (NOAA). In February, a devastating winter storm led to deadly power outages and freezing temperatures in Texas. Judah Cohen, director of seasonal forecasting at Atmospheric and Environmental Research, told the Guardian that the storm was in “part due to climate change” and couldn’t be “hand-waved away as if it’s entirely natural”. Morgan Brings Plenty is a Two-Spirit member of the Cheyenne River Sioux Tribe, and a social media fellow at the Indigenous Environmental Network. They recalled blizzards hitting their home in rural South Dakota while they were growing up. As the winters progressed, they’d see snow piling up to the rooftops of buildings. But Morgan told PinkNews the last time they saw such snowfall was when when they were “about three or four-years-old”. Last year, they only wore a light jacket for most of the winter because it was so warm, and any snowfall melted within a couple of days. They were on a run to the Oceti Sakowin camp, a historic gathering of Indigenous Nations which peacefully protested the Dakota Access Pipeline near the Standing Rock Reservation, when they suddenly became “extremely cold” and had to “bust out my winter jacket”. The Dakota Access Pipeline and Keystone XL have drawn mass opposition from environmental organisations and activists. They often run through Indigenous lands and the building of such monumental projects destroy wooded areas and disturb wildlife, and oil spills can ruin local water supplies.

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