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Happy Earth Day!

Happy Earth Day!

Happy Earth Day 2022, Pima County Residents!

This year’s Earth Day theme is “Invest In Our Planet”. Today we’d like to bring attention to the current climate change issues affecting Pima County.

Over the last several years, Pima County has experienced many of the negative consequences of climate change. One of the most notable displays of extreme weather in Pima County are the prolonged wildfire seasons. In 2020, a devastating wildfire season brought about The Bighorn Fire, which destroyed around 120,000 acres in the Catalina Mountains, alongside several other wildfires throughout Arizona. The unseasonably hot and dry conditions leading to these wildfires were exacerbated by the lack of rainfall from 2020’s monsoon season.

On the other end of the spectrum, climate change has ramped up the severity of our monsoon seasons. Although the year before lacked a monsoon season, 2021 went on record to have the third wettest monsoon in Tucson history and spawned several rescue missions over the course of the season. 

Despite the insane amount of rainfall we received in 2021, Pima County never escaped Arizona’s drought of over two decades. Pima County is considered to be at ground level zero in terms of water conservation because many of its rivers have had their water sources depleted. 

The Santa Cruz River, located here in Pima County, is an example of a river that dried up due to excessive groundwater pumping for irrigation and urban development. It’s not the only one – the Rillito River has also dried up due to the same conditions. In a desert like ours, water conservation is critical, and the damage done to these water sources can have massive consequences. Despite the current state here, there is still time to heal at least some of the damage. Our best hope may be returning these lands to native tribes who know how to take care of it.

This can be seen with the restoration of the Santa Cruz River, which has had water supply restored to areas running through the San Xavier District as a result of the Tohono O’odham Nation’s reclamation of the river. The Santa Cruz River was an important water source for early native tribes, but it was stolen and damaged by unsustainable groundwater pumping. Presently, the Tohono O’odham Nation has restored water supply following water rights settlements that gave them the opportunity to reduce groundwater usage.

The Santa Cruz River is just one of many possible examples of river and land restoration that can result from returning land to native tribes. This aspect is crucial to consider in environmental discussions moving forward.

International Women’s Day

International Women’s Day

Today, the world is celebrating International Women’s Day! It’s a day for celebrating the achievements of women everywhere and bringing attention to the fight for women’s equality.

This year’s campaign theme is #BreakTheBias, with the goal of freeing women from the effects of bias and discrimination. Biases, whether unintentional or not, persist in negatively impacting women in our society. Stripping away these biases is an important step for women’s advancements in all areas.

In the US’s current political state, women’s rights are actively at risk due to the many anti-abortion bills that have managed to get through legislature. In Arizona, state legislators introduced their own anti-abortion bill, designed to mimic the Texas law that was passed in 2021. In the face of proposals such as these, which would override women’s right to legal abortions, it’s important that one of the things we advocate for during this year’s IWD celebration is reproductive freedom.

For other ways that our community can get involved in the worldwide support of women, the International Women’s Day website contains more information regarding IWD’s mission statement, IWD events, free resources, and female-focused charities to promote.

Happy Thanksgiving!

Happy Thanksgiving!

This year, we’re grateful that there’s a vaccine available to let us gather safely with our families this holiday season.

Make sure you get your booster shot!

We hope you all have a safe and happy holiday season.

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