Book club – Fresh Banana Leaves by Jessica Hernandez

A cover of the book that features a drawing of large green leaves on an orange background. Over the top of the image, large captial letters spell out 'Fresh Banana Leaves'

An Indigenous vision for environmental science

Indigenous communities are among the most affected by climate change, yet their work and knowledge has long been dismissed as unscientific. In her first book Fresh Banana Leaves: Healing Indigenous Landscapes through Indigenous Science, Maya Ch’orti’ and Zapotec environmental scientist Jessica Hernandez recounts case studies, personal stories and family histories that focus on the knowledge of Indigenous Latin American women and land protectors. Hernandez’s book envisions a future in which Indigenous people are given autonomy over their lands and are treated as prominent leaders in the fight for environmental justice and against climate change.

We talk about the failures of western conservation approaches and speak to Hernandez about the many reasons science needs to start listening to Indigenous voices.