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From Stephanie Feldstein, Population and Sustainability Program Director
Fashion is one of the largest industries in the world. It’s responsible for massive greenhouse gas emissions, land use, water use, pollution and waste. And most of the materials used to create our clothing come at a high cost for wildlife.
The Center’s report Shear Destruction detailed how wool production harms biodiversity. This week we released a new study, Too Hot for Knitwear, showing that most wool apparel is blended with synthetic fibers made from fossil fuels.
In fact, our analysis found, more than half of wool items sold by top brands are blended with synthetic materials, weaving the worst aspects of fossil fuel production and animal agriculture into every garment. And we found very little use of reduced-impact fibers like Tencel, bamboo, linen, or organic cotton.
Head to our website to read the report and learn more, including what we’re asking brands to do. Then read on for ways you can take action for healthy school food, reproductive rights, and a wildlife-friendly community.
The Center is pleased to welcome Malia Becker (she/her) to our Population and Sustainability program. As our new associate, Malia will be working on campaigns to promote reproductive rights and alternative economies, including by overseeing the Endangered Species Condoms Project and Simplify the Holidays.
Malia is excited to expand our work on college campuses and connect with campus health clinics, sustainability offices, and environmental education programs. Many requests for Endangered Species Condoms already come from college students, staff and faculty, but we’d love to deepen our engagement on campuses. Malia is looking forward to developing new outreach ideas and storytelling projects to continue the conversation about comprehensive sex education, access to contraception, and how it all ties back to wildlife.
Interested in learning more about bringing Endangered Species Condoms to your campus? Email Malia at email@example.com.
Parents and Students: Take Action for Healthy School Meals
School meals are the primary source of nutrition for many children, but they notoriously lack healthy, plant-based options. Most schools rely on hamburgers and chicken nuggets with dairy milk as the only drink option. But right now the U.S. Department of Agriculture is updating its school meal standards. This only happens once every five years, so it’s important that parents and students speak up now about the need for plant-based options.
This toolkit provides all the information you need to reach out to the USDA, including a template to help you write your own comments and instructions on how to submit.
Our coalition partners are also hosting a webinar on Wednesday, April 26, at 8 p.m. ET / 5 p.m. PT to walk you through the process for making your voice heard. This virtual event is geared toward students, but anyone is welcome to join. RSVP to get a calendar invite.
The Fight for Medication Abortion
Mifepristone is a drug commonly used in medication abortions. Since the U.S. Food and Drug Administration approved it over 20 years ago, more than 5 million people have used it. And since Roe v. Wade was overturned, it’s been a lifeline in states with abortion restrictions. But this month a Texas federal judge ruled the FDA’s mifepristone approval unlawful.
After an emergency Department of Justice appeal, the Supreme Court blocked that ruling, so mifepristone remains approved for now. But by Friday night, the court will decide whether it stays available while the case proceeds.
This is about more than just a medication. The ruling against mifepristone rejects science and undermines the FDA’s ability to deem a drug safe and effective. It attacks access to medication abortion and miscarriage care even in states where abortion is still legal. And it’s part of a larger campaign to dismantle reproductive rights and people’s ability to control their own bodies and futures.
Here's one thing you can do: While this case makes its way through the courts, get the latest updates from the Center for Reproductive Rights.
With 8 billion people on the planet, there are billions of ways human lives affect wild plants and animals. And the relationship between our societies and nature is anything but simple. Population pressure and unsustainable consumption are intertwined with inequity and injustice. Policymakers are largely ignoring the extinction crisis, while an economy based on endless growth eats away at wildlife habitat. It’s easy to feel overwhelmed by the magnitude of these problems.
But there’s so much that each one of us can do. The Center’s Senior Scientist and Saving Life on Earth Campaign Director Tierra Curry wrote about these interconnections — and how you can make a difference — for The Revelator. “It’s easy to think that our individual actions don’t matter, but it’s precisely because there are so many of us that they do.”
Here’s one thing you can do: Check out our action alerts for ways you can help wildlife now.
Wildlife Spotlight: Miami Tiger Beetle
Miami tiger beetles are native Floridians who live in the pine rocklands of Miami-Dade County. These tiny, iridescent beetles are the size of a grain of rice, making them one of the smallest beetles in the United States. But they’re fierce predators of even smaller insects, helping keep their ecosystems in balance.
Florida’s fast-growing human population is more than 10 times larger than it was in the 1930s, when the tiger beetle was first discovered. The pine rocklands are feeling the squeeze of development and sea-level rise. Although these beautiful beetles have been protected under the Endangered Species Act since 2016, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service failed to protect their habitat for years. Following legal action by the Center and allies, this month the Service finally agreed to finalize critical habitat, giving tiger beetles and other imperiled species who share their home a chance for recovery.
Center for Biological Diversity
P.O. Box 710
Tucson, AZ 85702