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Rodrigo Tot

Rodrigo Tot (born c.1958) is a farmer and indigenous leader in Guatemala.

He is a member of the Q’eqchi ‘people . Tot was awarded the Goldman Environmental Prize in 2017, for his efforts of protecting the land from its community of environmental damages from mining. [1] [2]

Early Life

Tot was born in Guatemala just before the mining rush of the 60s. Agua Caliente at age 12. [3]



In 1985, Tot, along with others in his community, received a property in their community. Three years later, however, records of these titles disappeared, and when the final payments for the title were made, the people were denied the legal title of the land.

In 2004, two years after the farmers were denied the right to their land, the Guatemalan government granted a mining license for Mayan Communities. [4] After the mining takeover, the Q’eqchi set out to fight for their land rights in court. In 2011, the group won their lawsuit and the Guatemalan Constitutional Court issued a landmark decision that recognized the Q’edqchi people’s property rights. [5]


  1. Jump up^ Salabert, Shawnté. “These 6 Activists Are Risking It All in the Name of Environmental Justice” . outsideonline.com . Retrieved 25 July 2017 .
  2. Jump up^ “Rodrigo Tot 2017 Goldman Prize Recipient South and Central America” . goldmanprize.org . Retrieved 25 July 2017 .
  3. Jump up^ http://www.goldmanprize.org/recipient/rodrigo-tot/
  4. Jump up^ https://www.telesurtv.net/english/news/Indigenous-Guatemalan-Leader-Awarded-top-Environmental-Prize-for-43-Year-Anti-Mining-Struggle–20170424-0015.html
  5. Jump up^ https://www.pri.org/stories/2017-04-24/guatemalan-indigenous-land-rights-activist-wins-goldman-environmental-prize

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