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A crowd awaits the evening lighting ceremony at Mount Rushmore National Memorial in South Dakota on June 23, 2012. Mindy / Flickr

Fire experts have already criticized President Trump's planned fireworks event for this Friday at Mt. Rushmore National Memorial as a dangerous idea. Now, it turns out the event may be socially irresponsible too as distancing guidelines and mask wearing will not be enforced at the event, according to CNN.

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Demonstrators march down Pennsylvania Avenue near the Trump International Hotel during a protest against police brutality and the death of George Floyd on June 3, 2020 in Washington, DC. Tasos Katopodis / Getty Images

By John R. Platt

This year has brought us some brutal lessons so far, chief among them the fact that systemic racism drives or amplifies nearly all our societal and environmental ills.

Now is the time to listen to the people affected most by those problems of environmental justice and racism — and the activists working to solve them.

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EcoWatch Daily Newsletter

Indigenous leaders, environmental groups, interfaith and divestment coalitions are hosting online events, utilizing the film to support frontline and impacted communities. Courtesy / The Condor & The Eagle

By Tracy L. Barnett

A soon-to-be-released feature film exemplifies how independent media initiatives can be powerful tools for social and environmental justice organizing. Challenging the isolation and impotence that many are feeling in the face of the current health and racial crises, the internationally acclaimed documentary The Condor & The Eagle and its impact campaign "No More Sacrificed Communities" bring us together in these challenging times – reminding us of our deep interconnectedness with the Earth and one another.

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Dyed wool at a weaver's home in the Oaxaca region of Mexico. Wolfgang Kaehler / LightRocket / Getty Images

By Tracy L. Barnett

High up in the southern sierra of Mexico's state of Oaxaca, an innovative nonprofit business inspired by Mohandas Gandhi is helping Indigenous Zapotec families to weather the economic storm that COVID-19 has brought to the Mexican countryside.

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A scene from Unceded Territories, an immersive virtual reality experience created by Lawrence Paul Yuxweluptun and Paisley Smith. youtu.be

By Demi Guo

Lawrence Paul Yuxweluptun does not use email or text. In the Coastal Salish communities from which he hails, he has been known as a painter and a dancer since the 1980s. Yet, he has been exploring the "virtual reality renaissance"—the technology that allows you to figuratively step into a computer-generated 3D world—since it made its soft debut in the '90s.

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A family that has no running water sits outside their home in the Navajo Nation town of Thoreau, New Mexico on May 22, 2020. MARK RALSTON / AFP via Getty Images

Frustrated and disgusted that it has taken so long for the Department of the Treasury to distribute Federal stimulus funds to Native American tribes, a federal judge ordered Secretary Steve Mnuchin to distribute the money immediately, according to HuffPost.

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NASA satellite image showing fires raging across the Amazon rainforest on Aug. 11, 2019. NASA

By Daniel Ross

The wildfires that tore across Australia were as devastating as they were overwhelming, scorching some 15 million hectares of land, killing 34 people and more than 1 billion animals. In terms of its apocalyptic imagery — sweeping infernos torching great swaths with unerring speed — Australia's wildfires were hauntingly reminiscent of the fires that roared through the Amazon rainforest over the past year. Indeed, more than 80,000 fires hit the region during 2019, according to the Brazilian government.

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Chief Wilma Mankiller of the Cherokee Nation. Peter Turnley / Corbis / VCG / Getty Images

By Mark Trahant

Around the world, statues are coming down. Civil War generals. Mass murderers. And Christopher Columbus.

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The Sumas Pump Station on June 13, 2020, prior to clean-up. Transmountain

Canada's Trans Mountain pipeline spilled as many as 190,000 liters (approximately 50,193 gallons) of crude oil in Abbotsford, British Columbia (BC) Saturday, reinforcing concerns about the safety of the pipeline's planned expansion.

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BHP Billiton's iron ore plant with excavators and stockpiles of iron ore in Western Australia. John W Banagan / Stone / Getty Images

Anglo-Australian mining company BHP said it would pause plans to destroy 40 Aboriginal heritage sites as part of its expansion of an iron ore mine in Western Australia (WA).

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Honduran Lenca women take part in a protest demanding justice in the murder of Honduran activist Berta Caceres on the second anniversary of her death on March 2, 2018 in Tegucigalpa, Honduras. ORLANDO SIERRA / AFP / Getty Images

By Rachel Ramirez

Adán Vez Lira, a prominent defender of an ecological reserve in Mexico, was shot while riding his motorcycle in April. Four years earlier, the renowned activist Berta Cáceres was shot dead in her home in Honduras by assailants taking direction from executives responsible for a dam she had opposed. Four years before that, Cambodian forest and land activist Chut Wutty was killed during a brawl with the country's military police while investigating illegal logging.

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