By: Lynn Davison, BRN Board Chair
When people ask me why I am so invested in our work at Borderlands Restoration Network, the answers come easily. It all starts with the land, the Madrean Sky Islands of the southwest US and northern Mexico. E. O. Wilson includes our region in the top 10 for preservation in the Americas due to its remarkable biodiversity. The land and the multitude of plants and animals that live here are currently at risk due to the combination of climate change, overgrazing, and impacts of extractive industries. It is so important now to actively restore land, water, and habitat and to protect critical lands from future degradation. We know how to do that! If you doubt it, just consider what has happened at Cuenca Los Ojos, our network partner, over the last 30 years…..return of amazing riparian areas with year-round water and lush habitats to support the biodiversity our region is known for.
For me, however, the real hook is the combination of restoring the land AND fostering a restorative economy which supports livelihoods of people living in the borderlands. At BRN, this is not either or, it’s both. We are an ecologically based organization that also directly contributes to the restorative economy and partners with others in the region to collectively advance an equitable and inclusive economy that protects our precious natural resources and builds on the history, cultures, and skills of our people.
Our business model is grounded in partnerships within the tri-national region where we work. We place a significant focus on education with the goal of supporting the next generation of leaders to expand and carry on the work. We have a strong reputation with the public agencies, private foundations, and individuals that support out work.
I am proud to be part of the Borderlands team. The current coronavirus pandemic has given us a real incentive to expand our work. The world economy, based on growth at any cost, devours the earth and creates greater and greater inequities between a small concentration of the very rich and the growing number of the very poor, a perfect condition for a pandemic. We can and must do better.
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