Julia Hill

Julia is an environmental hero for protecting the California Redwoods.

In the last 20 years, Julia Lorraine Hill has emerged as a 20th “eco-celebrity” for her dedication to protecting the California redwoods from Pacific Lumber Company. For over 738 days, she lived in a tree called Luna and endured sickness, isolation, freezing temperatures, and innumerable challenges. For her actions, Julia Hill saved not only Luna, but also all the trees within a 200 foot radius from being cut down.

“…[W]hen you see someone in a tree trying to protect it, you know that every level of our society have failed , the consumers have failed, the companies have failed, the government has failed.”

Julia Butterfly Hill, The Legacy of Luna: The Story of a Tree, a Woman, and the Struggle to Save the Redwoods

Her story received national press and she has used that platform for good. From writing books to staying active in the environmental community — she has modeled a noble path that others have been inspired to follow.

Unfortunately, it can be dangerous to stand up for the environment. Not only do the local indigenous people face an imbalanced eco-system, that they have lived in harmony with for thousands of years, but activists are often killed.

In addition to individual killings, 2017 saw more massacres of defenders than any other year. In at least seven cases, more than four defenders were killed at a single time, which shows that perpetrators are feeling more emboldened, Leather says. In the past, killings have rarely been prosecuted.

National Geographic, Why 2017 Was the Deadliest Year for Environmental Activists

Over 207 people were killed in 2017. This number is likely lower, according to Global Witness, as certain countries that like true freedom of the press (Russia, China, Colombia, etc.) do not disclose this information. Even more upsetting is the fact that most of these deaths do not result in any prosecution of the company or of the people who commit murder.

Change starts with us. When you consume products, understand how and where companies source their goods. If the consumer doesn’t buy the products, those forests won’t be cut down.

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