Environmental Inequity in the United States: A Facet of Institutionalized Racism
People of color in the United States bear a disproportionate environmental burden including the siting of hazardous waste facilities, air and water pollution and exposure to lead paint. Commercial waste management industries, government policy makers and national, mainstream environmental groups have thus far ignored the environmental inequity that people of color endure. If this environmental inequity, deemed “environmental racism,” is to be properly and sufficiently addressed we must first acknowledge the United States’ institutionalized racism and frame this injustice within civil rights debate. Once this is achieved, environmental racism can be tackled with an aggressive, structured grassroots approach in an effort to achieve environmental justice for all.
Keywords: Environmental Racism, Environmental Justice, Institutionalized Racism, Environmental Inequity
Ms Jessica L. Burris
Research Assistant, Department of Psychology, Marquette University