EarthJustice employs over a hundred attorneys in offices across the country pursuing enforcement of laws that protect natural spaces and wildlife, healthy communities, clean energy and a healthy climate.
In 2017, Bently Foundation made a $100,000 grant to EarthJustice to help in their ongoing litigation on behalf of the Sioux Tribe of Standing Rock, North Dakota in their fight against the Dakota Access Pipeline. This 1,200-mile pipeline has a half-million barrel-per-day capacity and runs under the Missouri River, directly upstream of the Tribe’s drinking water supply as well as that of 17 million other Americans. Though EarthJustice and the Standing Rock Sioux have not yet succeeded in their efforts to stop the pipeline, litigation is ongoing and several successes have been achieved which they hope to build on as the trial continues. This precedent-setting case has the potential to change the way communities nation-wide fight back against unwanted fossil fuel infrastructure.
As America's original stewards of the natural environment, Tribal and Indian Nations and Indigenous communities have increasingly been approaching EarthJustice to assist in legal battles to protect their land and treaty rights. They are currently engaged in 50 cases with Native Peoples and are working closely with partners on others. These cases vary dramatically, but their outcomes all help achieve significant environmental safeguards if victorious. In 2019, Bently Foundation awarded EarthJustice with $250,000 to help support this wide-ranging initiative.
The firm has recently secured a string of major victories that have saved grizzly bears from hunting, sacred lands from being mined, pipelines from being installed, and rivers from being made uninhabitable for marine life. Bently Foundation was inspired by these important wins and approved an additional $250,000 grant to EarthJustice' Partnering with Indigenous Peoples initiative in 2020.
Photos by Chris Jordan-Bloch of EarthJustice. 1st & 2nd: Members of the coastal Salish Tribes sing at Fraser River to protest the Transmountain pipeline. 3rd: The arrival into testimony hall before Canada's decision-making board. 4th: EarthJustice attorney Angela Johnson Meszaros speaks with Wishtoyo Foundation Founder & Executive Director Mati Waiya at Wishtoyo Chumash village, Malibu, CA.