Goldman Prize Winner is Shot to Death in Northern Mexico

For the second time within a year, a winner of the prestigious Goldman Environmental Prize has been murdered. Isidro Baldenegro, a 51-year-old leader of the indigenous Tarahumara people, was shot at least six times in the northern Mexican state of Chihuahua. Baldenegro had worked against illegal logging in the Sierra Madre mountains. 

It’s unclear whether the murder was connected to Baldenegro’s environmental activities; police are searching for a 25-year-old suspect. Baldenegro “was a fearless leader and a source of inspiration to so many people fighting to protect our environment and indigenous peoples’ rights,” said Goldman President Susan Gelman. Honduran activist Berta Caceres, a 2005 Goldman Prize winner for her work against a hydroelectric project on her Lenca peoples’ ancestral lands, was slain last March. More than 500 land activists were murdered in Latin America from 2010 to 2015, according to the group Global Witness.