Has “health-based” environmentalist activism has become passe? The new green movement has called for concerted focus on green jobs as a way to turn economically devastated ghettos into functional neighborhoods. Activism that hopes to hold industrial facilities accountable for pollution that disproportionately impacts the health of vulnerable populations is weak and not worth the trouble, say the new environmentalists.
A read of the “Justice in the Air” report would maybe change that perspective. Using data from the EPA’s Toxics Release Inventory and Risk-Screening Environmental Indicators reports, researchers were able to locate where toxic air pollution from industrial facilities is strongest. They also determined the percentage of racial minorities and low-income families who live in those heavily impacted areas. To no surprise, they found that African-, Latino- and Asian-Americans suffer the worst health risks. For example, 69 percent of those whose health is impacted by ExxonMobil’s pollution are minorities.
Read the rest at the TAP blog found here.