What Is Environmental Justice?

(soft music) – Environmental justice really reflects the fundamental reality
that vulnerable communities are all too often subject to
the disproportionate burden of pollution and contamination. At the end of the day, when we’re talking about
environmental impacts, at the heart of it are
real people’s lives. And if you think about one
child who’s in her home that maybe has lead paint on the walls; she’s drinking water from the tap that might have lead contamination in it; she plays in a playground
that has arsenic in the soil and is developing asthma because of the polluting
facilities next door; she goes into her school
that has mold inside. These are real things to
happen on an everyday basis. Not everybody has the ability
to simply uproot themselves from a community where
they’ve lived for decades, where their families raised them, where they raised their children. People don’t have the financial mobility necessarily to simply get up and go. How do we combat environmental injustice? There are things like litigation, that means continue
fighting in the courts, continue fighting to strengthen
existing legislation, fighting to ensure that
existing legislation is actually being enforced. Things like community
organizing, public education, mobilizing the base, and elevating voices. There’s also things like
using media as an outlet to get your point across. In today’s day and age, especially
with this administration, I think there are an
enormous amount of hurdles in how to address
environmental injustices, but the reality is, we
have to keep fighting. You know, great gains
do not occur overnight; they take sometimes decades. I truly believe that environmental justice is the modern-day civil
rights issue of our time.

Comments 1

  • Just came across this while preparing for my course of Environmental Politics, Indeed very informative and Insightful. Support from Pakistan. I stand with NRDC 🙂

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