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Javier Sierra
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Javier Sierra is a bilingual media consultant and nationally syndicated
columnist for the Sierra Club.

His monthly column about Latinos and the environment is regularly published
by the country's top bilingual publications, including Los Angeles' La Opinion, and New York City's El Diario-La Prensa.

Entries by Javier Sierra

A Monumental Symphony and 3 Sour Notes Crying Wolf

(0) Comments | Posted July 18, 2014 | 4:44 PM

When President Obama signed the proclamation to designate the Organ Mountains/Desert Peaks National Monument in May, it was the last stitch of a tapestry to weave together several natural sites of extraordinary beauty and cultural significance.

The monument, located in Doña Ana County in southern New Mexico, is...

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It Reeks of Injustice in Wasco, CA: A Latino Barrio Gets the Short End of the Pollution Stick, Again

(1) Comments | Posted June 12, 2014 | 5:00 PM

Very close to the city of Delano, CA, where Cesar Chavez conducted a great deal of his work for justice, it reeks of injustice.

In Wasco -- in the San Joaquin Valley where tens of thousands of farm workers toil -- a local ordinance has approved the...

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Racism's in the Air: Race Is the Determining Factor When It Comes to Who Breathes Bad Air

(3) Comments | Posted May 5, 2014 | 8:34 PM

For decades the environmental justice movement has insisted that pollution is just another form of racism. Now a University of Minnesota study is conclusively confirming this painful reality.

The report found that, more than anything else, race is the determining factor in the levels of pollution that the...

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Latinos Benefit From Green Jobs: Dirty Energy Industry Looks Green With Envy

(0) Comments | Posted March 31, 2014 | 5:45 PM

We are in the midst of an epidemic of devastating oil and coal spills. In recent weeks, we have witnessed oil spills in the Mississippi River, on the Galveston, TX, coast and in Lake Michigan, among others. We have also seen terrible toxic coal...

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Why Are Latinos Way Ahead of the Climate Change Curve? 3 Latino Climatologists Respond

(0) Comments | Posted February 21, 2014 | 3:52 PM

In the battle against climate change, Latinos are in the line of fire. And our musketeers are our scientists.

We Latinos disproportionately suffer the effects of climate change because of our professional activities -- we are much more likely to work outdoors-- and the parts of the country where we...

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Smooth Sailing: Wind Energy Is Breaking World and National Records

(14) Comments | Posted January 21, 2014 | 2:38 PM

A gale of good news is hitting both the wind industry and the future of the planet.

The new year started out with two world records. Spain became the first country ever to get more energy from wind than any other source during a complete year in 2013,...

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Fast for Families and César Chávez: Two Stories About the Hunger for Human Decency

(0) Comments | Posted December 11, 2013 | 9:53 AM

During 22 days, four social justice heroes fasted in Washington, D.C., to support immigration reform including a path to citizenship, in the shadow of the very same Congress that refuses to vote on it.

Their names are Cristián Avila, Dae Joong Yoon, Eliseo Medina and Lisa Sharon --...

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Solar Panels Empower Low-Income Latino Communities: The Utilities Try to Spoil the Fiesta

(3) Comments | Posted October 8, 2013 | 9:48 AM

When it comes to the sun, for Rosa Mayorga and her family, everything that glitters is indeed gold.

A few months ago, this Irvine, California, resident had solar panels installed on her rooftop, and ever since then, the sun shines on her home with special intensity.

"This is fabulous. Since...

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A Dangerous Extremist Aiming for Virginia's Governorship

(13) Comments | Posted September 20, 2013 | 12:48 PM

When it comes to the Virginia gubernatorial campaign of Republican Ken Cuccinelli, we Latinos better pay good attention to his radical political agenda.

His extremist record lies in direct contradiction to the Latino community's priorities on a long list of issues, including the protection of our families' health.

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Petrochemical Bombardment on Latino Barrio Intensifies: Keystone XL Adds to the Misery

(12) Comments | Posted August 20, 2013 | 3:11 PM

The story is as old as it is sad for Manchester, the most polluted barrio of Houston, one of the country's most polluted cities.

This 90-percent Latino community is literally surrounded by petrochemical facilities that spew at least eight carcinogens into the air. The levels of one of...

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We Latinos Better Learn This Word: Fracking

(6) Comments | Posted July 18, 2013 | 9:10 AM

If we Latinos in the U.S. think the word "fracking" is a foreign concept of little concern to our daily lives, we need to be reminded that what you don't know can indeed harm you.

We must be aware of this concept because what is at stake here is the...

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The Bitterness of Coal: How This Dirty Fuel Punishes the Health of Latino Communitites

(0) Comments | Posted June 6, 2013 | 1:19 PM

Dulce ("Candy") Ortiz has committed herself to putting an end to the bitterness that punishes her community, Waukegan, Ill.

This environmental justice activist of Mexican origin has said enough is enough and started to fight for the retirement of the coal-burning plant that for decades has been poisoning the air...

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11 Million Reasons to Reform Our Broken Immigration System

(14) Comments | Posted May 1, 2013 | 9:50 AM

During an interview with a Florida radio station about the dangerous working conditions for undocumented Latino workers, the story of one of the listeners who called in got us all on the edge of our seats.

He told us his job consisted of being lowered into a huge hospital waste...

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Latina Activist Stands up to an Industry Sick With Greed

(9) Comments | Posted March 11, 2013 | 6:06 PM

Yudith Nieto has no time to waste. And like so many other young people like her, she's no longer waiting for a society that insists on postponing confronting the problem that will define her and future generations: climate disruption.

That's why Yudith -- a native Mexican and...

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Were Your Children Born a Generation Too Late?

(4) Comments | Posted February 5, 2013 | 5:01 PM

Are you ready to tell your children they were born a generation too late? That there is nothing you can do to fight the destruction of the earth's climate?

Me neither. And perhaps you'd like to know that there is a whole lot we all can do to confront the...

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Latino Workers on the Forefront of Sandy Recovery Efforts

(11) Comments | Posted December 26, 2012 | 9:38 AM

The first wave of destruction unleashed by Superstorm Sandy overwhelmed our senses with the fury of its wind and the rage of its surging waters.

The second one, though, is a quiet yet potentially lethal menace: Sandy covered the devastated landscapes of the New York and New Jersey coastlines with...

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A Recognition to Cesar Chavez's Monumental Environmental Legacy

(1) Comments | Posted October 11, 2012 | 6:57 PM

When Cesar Chavez died in his sleep -- the same way he lived, peacefully -- he left us a dream of justice that is yet to be realized. He also left us a legacy of courage, compassion and humility that has inspired millions to keep fighting for his ideals and...

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Romney's Energy Proposal: The Jurassic Plan

(61) Comments | Posted September 17, 2012 | 2:08 PM

Mitt Romney finally unveiled his energy plan, and it came so loaded with fossil fuels, we might as well call it the Jurassic Plan.

In a stubborn rejection of the realities of the 21st Century, Romney is trying to sell us a sputtering lemon that moves better in...

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A Wise Lesson to Learn From Latino Voters

(0) Comments | Posted August 14, 2012 | 6:02 PM

When it comes to knowledge about the health of our communities and the environment, we Latinos are way ahead of the curve.

And this knowledge does not come from a privileged position. Quite the opposite. We know these issues well because we Latinos suffer the consequences of pollution and environmental...

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Time to Clear the Air: Wind Works

(14) Comments | Posted July 6, 2012 | 2:53 PM

Don Quixote, in one of his most delusional adventures, attacks a group of windmills after becoming convinced that they are mythological monsters.

In another example of real life imitating fiction, Big Coal and its allies in Congress are attacking the windmills of the 21st Century.

This attack is not only...

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