Tanya Sanerib ’02
International Legal Director, Center for Biological Diversity
Facing the extinction emergency, I believe that people can and must re-envision their relationship with wildlife and nature. The current pandemic is a symptom of our unhealthy relationship with our planet and of the ongoing extinction crisis. As more people enter pristine ecosystems, exploit wildlife, change our climate, and convert our wild places for human use, not only do we risk new diseases emerging but we also risk destroying the fabric of our world and the great diversity that binds it together. Last year UN experts called for transformative change or we risk losing a million species in the coming decades. I fight for that change. I can envision a different world where people have reworked their relationship with wildlife and nature; where our greatest biodiversity is preserved in half the land, fresh water, and oceans; and where livelihoods are transitioned to work for people and the planet.