Virtual Celebration for BIPOC in the Outdoors + Landmark Environmental Justice Bill Introduced in Congress

Photo by Adam Andres Pawlikiewicz Mesa (@adamonthego on Instagram)
Photo of Ayesha McGowan (right) on a ride with Black Foxes cycling group in Durango, Colorado, USA

Virtual Celebration for BIPOC cyclists in the Outdoors

The first African-American female professional road racer, Ayesha McGowan, is launching her inaugural Thee Abundance Summit this Friday, March 26-27. As an advocate for people of color in cycling, the virtual event aligns with McGowan’s work in diversity and inclusion by bringing together and celebrating BIPOC in the outdoors. According to the event, this “is for, by, and about Black and Brown folks, though everyone is welcome and invited to attend.” 

“I think it’s absolutely necessary that I host a celebration of joy,” McGowan said in a press release. “All too often we are only invited to share our pain, our struggles, and our sorrows. This is a space where we, as Black and Brown people in the cycling and outdoor communities, can bring our full selves with the sole purpose of having a good time.”

Supported by Zwift, Liv Cycling, SRAM, and Backcountry.com, Thee Abundance Summit will be co-hosted by Jools Walker and Olivia Williams. The event will be free for anyone to view with the opportunity to donate towards a mini-grant program for Black and Brown women road racers who are just starting out. 

The event will be streamed on YouTube, for more information and to see the full schedule, visit https://www.aquickbrownfox.com/ 

Landmark Environmental Justice Bill Introduced in Congress

Earlier this month, the most far-reaching Congressional bill was introduced to address environmental injustice in the South. The bill comes at a time where political support is growing for communities of color and people with limited resources to withstand the harmful impacts of climate change. 

Introduced by Chair Raúl Grijalva, Rep. Donald McEachin, and Sen. Tammy Duckworth with much community input, the Environmental Justice for All Act is a “far-reaching approach to seeking environmental justice, health equity, and climate for underserved communities,” according to the Southern Environmental Law Center (SELC).

“If you want to see why this legislation is critically needed, look no farther than the Boxtown neighborhood in Memphis, or countless other communities throughout the South,” said Chandra Taylor, Senior Attorney and leader of SELC’s Environmental Justice Initiative, said in a press release. “The passage of the Environmental Justice for All Act would give all communities a direct and clear path to redress environmental injustice.”

The bill would affect Alabama, Georgia, North Carolina, South Carolina, Tennessee, and Virginia. According to SELC, The main points of it are strengthening the Civil Rights Act of 1964, requiring states to consider the cumulative impacts in permitting decisions under the Clean Air Act and Clean Water Act, encouraging more equitable access to parks and outdoor recreation, increasing meaningful community involvement under the National Environmental Policy Act, and providing funds to better support communities and workers as they move away from polluting industries. 

“At key moments of our history, Congress has taken big and bold legislative actions to mend the tremendous wound and lasting impacts of racism in our nation, “said Taylor. “Passing this bill would be an integral part to correcting the past and ensuring the basic rights of all to clean air, clean water, and a healthy environment.”

White Plumes of Smoke Rising in the Appalachian Mountains Viewed Along the Blue Ridge Parkway – courtesy of Getty Images by
RCKeller

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