Panel : Why is Environmental Activism Queer Activism?

Why is Environmental Advocacy Queer Advocacy?

January 27, 2021
12:00 – 1:00p

FREE virtual event
Live on facebook & YouTube

Join us for a discussion where we will explore the intersectionality of gender identity, sexual oreintation, and the environment. How will climate change uniquely effect our community? If we don’t take a seat at the discussion table, how could decisions addressing environmental concerns impact our health and wellness? Hear perspectives from artists, activists, and acedemics on how and why the effects of climate change and polution disproportionally affect queer communities, particularly queer communities of colour, and why as a community we need to prioritize environmental equity as part of our push for equality.

This discussion will feature thoughts from Hamzah Jhaveri, Andrian Huq and Arien Wilkerson. The panel will moderated by environmental activist, climate justice researcher, and community educator AJ Hudson.

Watch on YouTube
Our Speakers (from left to right) : Arien Wilkerson, Adrian Huq, and Hamzah Jhaveri.
This program is made possible by :

About our Panelists

Hamzah Jhaveri – Panelist

Hamzah (they/them or he/him) is a rising Junior at Yale studying Anthropology and Energy Studies, with a specific interest in energy and environmental justice. Their coursework has spanned disciplines, and centers topics like postcolonial scholarship, sexual politics, and science and technology studies. Outside of the classroom, they are an organizer with the Yale Endowment Justice Coalition, Sunrise New Haven, and most recently, New Haven Rising as a part of the Yale: Respect New Haven Campaign. Currently, on their leave of absence, Hamzah is a Policy Intern at the Environmental and Energy Study Institute, a nonprofit organization dedicated to promoting and reporting on climate policy on a regional and federal level. They are also currently serving a yearlong tenure as Co-Editor-in-Chief of the Yale Herald, a weekly paper on campus.

AJ Hudson – Moderator

AJ (he/him) is an environmental activist, climate justice researcher, and community educator. One of his current research projects is exploring how Hurricane Maria has driven queer displacement and the fracturing of LGBTQ+ neighborhoods in San Juan, Puerto Rico. Before pivoting towards environmental justice work, AJ spent five years teaching public school and advocating for educational equity in New York, and eventually co-founded a public high school in one of the most disenfranchised, polluted, and over-policed neighborhoods in Brooklyn. Since leaving teaching, AJ has led community workshops on climate justice with UPROSE, organized to pass New York’s Climate Leadership and Community Protection Act (aka the NY State Green Deal), and helped to plan and execute the 2019 Climate Justice Youth Summit, the nation’s largest annual gathering for young people of color on climate change.

Adrian Huq – Panelist

Adrian (they/them) is a freshman at Tufts University majoring in Environmental Studies and a 2020 graduate from New Haven Public Schools. Adrian is an activist and organizer who serves as the co-founder of New Haven Climate Movement’s Youth Action Team, which fights for bold action on the climate crisis from New Haven city government and the state. In the team’s Climate Education Committee, Adrian is part of the effort to push the New Haven Board of Education to implement climate change/climate justice education in their high schools. Since 2018, they have been working with the Climate Health Education Project to facilitate a student internship which advances climate education in New Haven area high schools. They also currently work for multiple environmental organizations and volunteer with the New Haven Peace Commission.

Arien Wilkerson – Panelist

Arien (they/them or she/her) is a queer, black, choreographer, dancer, film maker, director, producer, installation born/raised in Hartford CT. Arien Wilkerson | Tnmot Aztro based in Philadelphia Pa, is a collaborative multidisciplinary company featuring six to ten artists at any given time. Sculpture, spatial design, lighting design, installation, photography, sound design, and at times seven or more movement artists including Wilkerson. Tnmot Aztro considers that the complexities within art derive from the alienation of objects, identities, the body, sounds and humans, among many things. As an entity the artistic practice in making performance, sculpture, experimental film, photography and dance is rooted in repurposing or redefining meanings of “fine art” and its attachments to colonialism, white supremacy, and institutionalized racism.

Wilkerson was nominated for a Pew Fellow in 2020, awarded 2020 Black Artist Support from the Sachs Program for arts & Innovation at Upenn, 2019 Connecticut Dance Alliance Jump Start Award, The Greater New Haven Arts Council & Connecticut office of the arts – Artist Workforce Initiative Sponsorship(2019), The Connecticut office of the arts Artist Fellow (2019). The Connecticut office of the arts project grant (2018), two New England Dance Fund Grants (2017) (2018), The spirit of Juneteenth award from the Amistad Center for Art and Culture(2017), The National Endowment for the Arts “Big Read” Grant (2018), The Director’s Discretionary Fund Award from the William Caspar Graustein Memorial Fund (2018) and was selected as NEFA’S 2018 Rebecca Blunk Fund Awardee