Previous Environmental Justice News 2021

Little Village residents slam city for failing to reduce influx of industry: ‘As if we don’t deserve clean air’ 12-16-21

The neighborhood is home to more than two dozen industrial facilities that use medium or heavy-duty diesel trucks, according to a 2019 count by the Little Village Environmental Justice Organization. Read more

Black and Latino neighborhoods pay more for energy despite far lower emissions 12-02-21

A new study explores the rift between who gets energy benefits and who bears energy burdens. Read more

A freeway ripped the heart out of Black life in Detroit. Now Michigan wants to tear it down. 12-01-21

Highway removal is the easy part. Making reparations is where it gets complicated. Read more

Energy company cancels $2.5 billion oil export terminal in Louisiana 11-24-21

The project faced stiff opposition from residents, who argued it would have destroyed a historic slave burial site. Read more 

Here’s how the bipartisan infrastructure deal could promote environmental justice 11-16-21

According to the White House, the new law earmarks $240 billion for environmental justice projects — the largest such investment in U.S. history. Read more

Biden Plans to Bar New Drilling Around a Major Native American Cultural Site 11-15-21

After years of tribal requests, the president plans to block new oil and gas leases within 10 miles of Chaco Canyon in New Mexico. The ban is likely to generate strong pushback from industry. Read more

The role of electric vehicles in the push for environmental justice 11-10-21

Expanding electric vehicle access will help improve air quality and mobility in low-income communities plagued by environmental racism. Read more

Nature for all: Connecting communities of color with the outdoors 10-27-21

From an early age, many people don’t feel welcome in outdoor spaces or inspired to pursue environmental science careers. That needs to change Read more

North Carolina tribes fear pipeline will damage waterways, burial grounds 10-15-21

A fracking company wants to extend the Mountain Valley Pipeline into the lands of Indigenous people and predominantly Black communities. Read more

Left Behind By the Hurricanes 11-13-21

In the wake of extreme weather, a city on the U.S. Gulf Coast shows just how devastating the ravages of climate change can be for the most vulnerable in the community. Read more

Indigenous Climate Activists Have Prevented Over 1.5 Billion Tons of GHGs 10-08-21

new study co-authored by researchers from Indigenous Environmental Network (IEN) and Oil Change International has found that Indigenous climate activists in the US and Canada have “stopped or delayed greenhouse gas (GHG) pollution equivalent to at least one-quarter of annual US and Canadian emissions.” Read more

Haskell Indian Nations Professor Fights Climate Change Through Indigenous Land Ethic 11-05-21

“If I were going to make a generalization about indigenous values in North America, I would say the foundation of those values is about the land; it’s about the power of place,” says Wildcat. Read more

Poison in the Air 11-02-21

The EPA allows polluters to turn neighborhoods into “sacrifice zones” where residents breathe carcinogens. ProPublica reveals where these places are in a first-of-its-kind map and data analysis. Read more

Decades of legal battles over pollution by industrial hog farms haven’t changed much for eastern NC residents burdened by environmental racism 10-29-21 Read more

A historically Black town stood in the way of a pipeline – so developers claimed it was mostly white 09-16-21

When residents in Union Hill, Virginia, decried the pipeline as a form of environmental racism, the energy company insisted it wasn’t. Read more

5 years after Standing Rock, the Dakota Access pipeline continues operating — illegally 09-01-21

It’s time to shut it down for good. Here’s what it would take. Read more

This group aims to address the biggest blind spot for government funding 08-26-21

The Justice40 Accelerator is making it easier for overburdened communities to access funding. Read more

A new scorecard ranked companies on environmental racism. Guess who came in last? 08-23-21

ExxonMobil and other oil companies got negative scores for polluting nonwhite communities. Read more

Army: Full environmental review of $9.4B plastics complex 08-18-21

A civilian Pentagon official ordered the Army Corps of Engineers on Wednesday to conduct a full environmental assessment of a $9.4 billion Formosa Plastics complex planned in Louisiana, drawing praise from environmentalists. Read more

Calls Grow to Protect Workers From Extreme Heat 08-09-21

As the number of extreme heat days continues to rise, people working outside or in un-airconditioned buildings face increasing risks as there’s currently no federal standard protecting them from heat. Read more 

IPCC aims to elevate women’s voices in climate science 08-02-21

For too long, the world’s foremost scientific body on global warming has overlooked the contributions of female scientists and the unique impact of climate change on the planet’s roughly 3.8 billion women, advocates say. Read more

The Biden Administration’s Embrace of Environmental Justice Has Made Wary Activists Willing to Believe 08-01-21

“I could not have predicted this,” says Vernice Miller-Travis, who gathered data for a seminal 1987 study, “Toxic Wastes and Race in the United States.” Read more

Descendants Of Slaves Say This Proposed Grain Complex Will Destroy The Community 07-07-21

A bitter fight has broken out between the powerful backers of this major new grain terminal on the Mississippi River in south Louisiana and the historic Black community that has been here for 150 years.Read more 

Cleveland’s Plan for Climate Justice Could be a Model for the Rest of the Country 06-23-21

Conversations around climate justice solutions are getting louder now that the Biden administration is discussing the climate crisis as environmental justice, NPR reports. The big question is what actions need to be taken now in order to best protect heavily-impacted, marginalized communities moving forward. Read more

How Climate-Proofing Mass Transit Can Make Cities More Equitable 06-21-21

By taking global warming and demographics into account, transit agencies can better serve vulnerable populations. Read more

A local look at air pollution highlights inequalities within cities 06-20-21

High-resolution data on air quality are helping scientists and community groups understand and address disparities in pollution between neighborhoods. Read more

Decades after Watts revolted, the Black neighborhood is being ‘revitalized’ — but the cost is steep 06-18-21

Residents wonder how the most environmentally burdened place in California became one of the most vied-for plots of land in all of LA. Read more

Louisiana Catholic environmental justice activist wins Goldman Prize 06-16-21

“I had no intention of being an activist,” Sharon Lavigne, a Black Catholic from St. James Parish, Louisiana. Read more

New mapping tool aims to clarify Virginia environmental justice debates 06-16-21

New interactive map of Virginia aims to identify hotspots where residents are facing disproportionate pollution and socioeconomic burdens. Read more

Who gets a park? 05-27-21

Cities are finally being analyzed for the equity of their green space. Read more

Amazon shareholders demand end to pollution hitting people of color hardest 05-24-21

“As employees, we are alarmed that Amazon’s pollution is disproportionately concentrated in communities of color,” a petition signed by 640 workers said. Read more

Here’s why Congress is recognizing Hazel M. Johnson, the ‘mother of environmental justice’ 05-17-21

Proposed legislation would posthumously award Johnson the Congressional Medal of Honor — and her own postage stamp. Read more

The EPA just accused Missouri’s environmental agency of violating the Civil Rights Act 05-14-21

The findings are the latest example of how the Biden administration is prioritizing environmental justice. Read more

Why Indigenous women are risking arrest to fight Enbridge’s Line 3 pipeline through Minnesota 05-10-21

Enbridge’s Line 3 pipeline construction is running into tribal resistance over fears of water pollution, wild rice impacts, climate change, and exploitation of Native women. Read more

Why the Environmental Movement Should Stop Ignoring Asian Americans 05-03-21

A Korean American examines her ancestral past—steeped in colonialism as well as conservation—to explore her values as an environmentalist. Read more

17 Young People on the Moment the Climate Crisis Became Real to Them 04-19-21

From watching An Inconvenient Truth to living through Superstorm Sandy. Read more

How Wall Street funds environmental injustice against women 04-15-21

A new report examines the link between banks, fossil fuels, and health risks to women Read more

NAACP Report: Fossil Fuel Industry Uses Deception to Conceal Damage to BIPOC Communities 04-02-21

The fossil fuel industry continues to use a long list of deceptive tactics to conceal environmental destruction that harms Black, Indigenous, and People of Color (BIPOC) and low-income communities. Read more

A groundbreaking environmental justice bill is poised to become law 03-19-21

With slim majorities in Congress and an ally in the White House, the Democrats who drafted the Environmental Justice for All Act, a comprehensive piece of federal legislation that aims to address environmental disparities in vulnerable communities across the country.Read more at Grist 

After 20 years of advocacy, Black farmers finally get debt relief 03-11-21

On Wednesday, Congress passed one of the most sweeping relief programs for minority farmers in the nation’s history, through a provision of President Biden’s pandemic stimulus bill. Read more at Grist

Women Are Powering the Environmental Justice and Climate Change Movement 03-08-21

Today we celebrate International Women’s Day by profiling six women who are leading the global and U.S. movement to advance climate change solutions, protect nature and lift global ambition to achieve the sustainable future we need for today and the future. Read more at Our Daily Planet

The Legacy of an EJ Titan 03-05-21

Racial justice and climate justice are inseparable. Few would deny this, but that wasn’t always so. For much of its history, the environmental movement has been overwhelmingly white and gave little thought to the impacts pollution and climate change had on people of color and underserved communities. Read more at Grist

There’s a clear fix to helping Black communities fight pollution. 02-26-21

Industrial pollution has sickened and poisoned Black communities for decades. Environmental justice experts have a solution to stop this. Read more at Vox

The unsung hero who saved a Florida beach 02-19-21

The fact you don’t hear MaVynee Oshun Betsch mentioned alongside conservationists like John Muir, Aldo Leopold, and perhaps Rachel Carson says more about who we enshrine in history books than Betsch’s remarkable contributions to the environmental movement and her valiant campaign to save a landmark of Black history. Read more at Grist

Texas Blackouts Hit Minority Neighborhoods Especially Hard 02-18-21

When the lights went out Monday night in the Alazán-Apache housing project in San Antonio — which stands in one of the city’s poorest ZIP codes — the traffic signals in the neighborhood flickered off and storekeepers pulled down their shutters. Read more at The New York Times

14 Black-Led & Black-Focused Nonprofits Working For A Clean Environment 02-09-21

It’s important to build a community-based cushion by throwing our support behind nonprofits that deserve more resources and stronger advocacy. Read more at Green Philly

Hogwash 02-05-21

Making fuel from pig poop sounds exciting — unless you live nearby. Read more at Grist

Black Women Aren’t Saving America For You. They’re Protecting Themselves 02-01-21

Not many forces work harder than Black women leading a movement. From the fight for suffrage to today’s battle against voter suppression, Black women have been the backbone of political progression, even when they don’t get the return on investment they deserve. Read more at Huff Post

A Convergent Imagining 02-01-21

What if Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. and Rachel Carson had met? Read more

‘A sacrifice zone’: Why did a Chicago community of color get saddled with a polluting scrapyard? 01-27-21

After a polluting scrapyard closed in a predominantly white and wealthy neighborhood on Chicago’s North Side last year, the very same company got approval to open a new scrapyard on the city’s predominantly low-income and Latino Southeast Side. Read more at Grist

Biden to place environmental justice at center of sweeping climate plan 01-27-21

The president plans far-reaching actions to cut carbon emissions, aid polluted communities and shift the nation away from fossil fuels. The administration will treat climate change ‘as the emergency that it is,’ one top adviser says. Read more at The Washington Post

Vice President-Elect Kamala Harris’s Climate Record: A Focus on Justice 01-19-21

In the United States today, people of color and low-income people are disproportionately likely to be exposed to dangerous air pollutants. Read more at Environmental and Energy Study Institute

Martin Luther King and the Long Arc of Racism 01-18-21

On Jan. 5, exactly 10 days before what would have been the Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.’s 92nd birthday, the Rev. Raphael Warnock, the senior pastor of King’s former church, won election to become Georgia’s first Black senator. Read more at The New York Times

Will 2021 Be the Year for Environmental Justice Legislation? States Are Already Leading the Way 01-15-21

The new state laws address the disproportionate impact of climate change and pollution on communities of color. Joe Biden is promising to do the same in Washington. Read more at Inside Climate News

The U.S. Military Can Lead on Energy Innovation and Environmental Justice Starting in Georgia 01-03-21

We must also address the challenge of climate change and the opportunity of the energy transition in a way that creates more jobs and improves health and safety for more Americans. Read more at Our Daily Planet