February is LGBT+ History Month, which aims to promote equality and diversity for the LGBTQ+ community.
To mark the occasion, we want to highlight the work of LGBTQ+ organisations working within climate action and sustainability.
On the surface, there might not seem to be a clear connection between LGBTQ+ rights and the climate crisis. But, as many of the organisations below point out, marginalised communities are often disproportionately affected during times of crisis. For example, LGBTQ+ people are more likely than the general population to be homeless, putting them at greater risk from extreme weather. Discrimination also means they may not be able to safely access emergency support.
It’s essential that climate action includes marginalised voices. Set up by and for the LGBTQ+ community, the following organisations provide community; connection with the environment and other people; and the opportunity to bring diverse perspectives to the collective movement to create a greener, fairer world.
Queers x Climate
Due to the threats to humanity driven by climate change, the progress made towards LGBTQ+ rights could be erased because of a lack of resources. Queers x Climate, a global organisation started in Mexico in 2020, hope to change the injustice that many LGBTQ+ people face by supporting LGBTQ+ activists, as well as promoting environmental awareness and sustainable consumption.
“In just one decade, the scarcity of resources caused by climate change will increase the number of socio-economic and political conflicts, resulting in a severe setback to the human rights gains made in recent years,” – Diego de León, Queers X Climate founder.
Their pledge includes six steps for people to follow to help to prevent climate change including measuring and offsetting CO2 emissions.
Sign their pledge to help combat climate change.
Our Climate Voices
The impact of climate change disproportionately affects certain groups such as people on low incomes, women, people of colour and the LGBTQ+ community. Our Climate Voices focuses on humanising the disaster by providing a platform for people from underrepresented communities to share how climate change impacts them.
A series of podcasts entitled In Conversation brings together climate activists from different marginalised communities to discuss how the fight for climate justice is linked to the individual fights against oppression. In Conversation: An Episode on Climate Justice & Queer and Trans Liberation combines the views of five queer or trans climate activists to show how their fight for liberation links to the fight for climate justice.
Queer Ecojustice Project
Queer Ecojustice Project and aims to amplify the voices of LGBTQ+ climate activists, focusing on supporting queer people in rural areas; queer people who are facing homelessness or incarceration; and queer people working within climate justice organisations.
The project also collates a library of books, articles, films and art to highlight the struggles that LGBTQ+ people face, especially in relation to climate change.
“On a practical level, many of the queer and trans people who are in environmental justice organizations are leading incredible campaigns right now but don’t necessarily have a narrative for why their identities as queer and trans people are relevant in the struggle.”– Vanessa Raditz, Queer Ecojustice Project co-founder.
OUT for Sustainability
OUT for Sustainability provides safe spaces to develop sustainable habits and create environmental justice by and for LGBTQ+ communities. Some of their projects include:
- Greener Pride, where OUT for Sustainability works with organisers of festivals and Pride parades to work towards plastic free and carbon neutral events.
- Fab Planet Summit, a national conference focusing on the role of queer people in matters of environmental justice and sustainability.
- The #Qready climate and natural disaster preparedness guide is made specifically for the LGBTQ+ community and contains useful items to have in case of natural disaster, as well as useful tips for staying safe.
GiveOut is an LGBTQ+ community foundation working to give LGBTQ+ people the freedom to live fully without the fear of oppression and violence. Their work, especially their new Crisis and Community campaign, is committed to making sure the community doesn’t become even more marginalised during times of crisis.
GiveOut also run a LGBTQI emergency fund, which provides urgent humanitarian relief tailored to the needs of LGBTQ+ people, who may not be able to safely access other forms of support.
LGBTIQA+ Greens is a subset of the Green Party of England and Wales, and they focus on creating a fairer society for the LGBTQ+ community. Current policies and campaigns include:
- Fighting for the rights of LGBTQ+ refugees
- Ensuring LGBTQ+ education in schools
- Helping victims of domestic violence and homelessness in the LGBTQ+ community.
Whilst LGBTIQA Greens is not specifically an LGBTQ+ climate organisation, the Green Party is committed to fighting climate change by funding renewable energy sources amongst many other policies.