Karin Nansen, founding member of REDES / Friends of Earth Uruguay has been chosen as the chair of Friends of the Earth International, the world´s largest grassroots environmental federation. Karin follows Jagoda Munic of Croatia, whose two terms as chair ended in 2016.
Nansen was a founding member of REDES – Friends of the Earth Uruguay which was formed in 1988. The Uruguayan activist has worked side by side with peasant women, agroecological processes and the defense of native seeds in Uruguay and different Latin American countries.
In addition, the activist has been member of Friends of the Earth Latin America and the Caribbean (ATALC)´s Executive Committee, as well as the Executive Committee of Friends of the Earth International. As such, she has been involved in numerous socioenvironmental struggles in countries across five continents and she has devoted her live to working for environmental justice.
Karin Nansen, chair of Friends of the Earth International:
“I feel honoured to be chosen as a chair of FoEI. It means a lot to me since this federation is committed to environmental, social and gender justice and system change, which implies understanding the structural causes of environmental problems and to demand and build real solutions to realize people’s rights.”
“The top priority for the next 2 years will be to mobilize people in all corners of the world for a radical change in our food and energy systems, as well as to collectively defend forest and biodiversity and challenge corporate power and the neoliberal architecture of free trade and investments agreements.”
Karin Nansen becomes chair of Friends of the Earth International at a very important moment, with key challenges ahead. Friends of the Earth International has started a system change process which focuses on analysing and challenging the power and privilege granted by capitalism and patriarchy to global elites that endanger life on the planet as we know it.
It is also undeniable that the situation of territory and human rights defenders is going through one of the most critical moments in history, with a serious worsening of the attacks against their most basic rights and processes of criminalization against them, mainly in the Global South. The persecutions, threats and murder of social leaders are now, unfortunately, daily news.
In this time of crisis and with the challenges ahead, Friends of the Earth International is delighted that Karin Nansen has been chosen as chair of the federation, and looks forward to the Uruguayan activist’s political leadership of Friends of the Earth International.