Climate change is a long-term shift in global measures of climate, such as precipitation and temperature, caused by human activities that increase greenhouse gas levels. Its many effects include rising sea levels and prolonged heat waves. Climate justice is a practice that promotes equity by responding to the harmful impacts of climate change in ways that center the challenges of historically marginalized groups.
Climate, Hunger, and Racial Equity
While climate change impacts everyone, regardless of race, policies and practices around climate have historically discriminated against and excluded people of color. Due to structural racism, communities of color bear the negative impacts at a higher rate. Addressing climate change through a climate justice approach ensures that climate change is addressed in a racially equitable way that centers the voices and leadership of people of color.
Although this is often not acknowledged, Latino/as have a long Indigenous lineage in the Americas, with societies established centuries before the land was invaded by Spanish and English colonizers and long before the United States was formally established. Today, there are more than 59 million Latino/as living in what is now the United States. Some were born in the U.S. while others migrated from what is now Mexico, Central America, or South America.