In this eye-opening episode of Islam & Earth in the third Jumah of Shawwal, 1444, Dr. Nadia Ahmad shares insights from her work on the environmental legal framework and how her own journey in law initiated at the heels of 9/11 and the civil rights issues that would ensue.
She discusses sacrifice zones, whose residents are subject to severely hazardous impacts due to environmental injustices. She speaks about corporatism, which she defines as a system that's been put in place to ensure how the interest of corporations are maintained within decision-making structures of the state, thus causing environmental impacts which are purposefully silenced. She explains how climate cages exist, whether as prisons or economic, or political cages that enclose vulnerable populations to environmental impacts.
She explains how respectability politics forces conformity to the mainstream in a respectable way, instead of speaking with transparency. She highlights the need to speak in ways that matter most in critical moments of your life, and not simply engage in respectability politics, or else it loses the edge of what the argument is.
Dr. Ahmad sheds light on the unique way the Islamic system endows rights to trees, and animals which hasn't been included as a part of the broader environmental law-making process as many of these Islamic texts are not translated into Western languages.
Finally, Dr. Ahmad discusses climate chauvanism, as she argues that the voices of the climate change narrative is predominantly represented by a male, white demographic, & climate solutions are often through the lens of first world countries.
She stipulates the importance of translating our ideas into part of the public space, so we can be part of the narrative.
Dr. Nadia B. Ahmad was born in Orlando to immigrant parents from Pakistan and India. She's an Associate Professor at Florida’s Barry University School of Law and Coordinator of the Environmental and Earth Law Certificate Program. She researches the intersections of energy siting, environment, and sustainable development drawing on international investment law and corporate social responsibility. She serves as a Kerry Fellow at the Yale Jackson School of Global Affairs, the American Bar Foundation, a Council Member of the American Bar Association’s Section of Civil Rights and Social Justice, & as a member of the Academic Advisory Group for the International Bar Association's Section of Energy, Environment, Natural Resources and Infrastructure Law. She spent her academic career focusing on frontline communities who are the most vulnerable to energy production. She's a co-author of the textbook, “Environmental Justice: Law, Policy, and Regulation." She's been a Visiting Associate Professor at Yale Law School and Visiting Assistant Professor of Environmental Law at Pace Haub School of Law.
Islam & Earth is a podcast that explores topics and issues related to earth connections through an Islamic worldview.
Tune in every other Jumah (Friday) for a new episode!