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Environmental Justice Overview. Topics Policy background; relationship to NEPA Overview of EJ processes & analysis –Define the Study Area –Methods for.

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Presentation on theme: "Environmental Justice Overview. Topics Policy background; relationship to NEPA Overview of EJ processes & analysis –Define the Study Area –Methods for."— Presentation transcript:

1 Environmental Justice Overview

2 Topics Policy background; relationship to NEPA Overview of EJ processes & analysis –Define the Study Area –Methods for identifying protected populations and community characteristics –Analyzing Impacts

3 Policy Background Relationship to NEPA

4 Housing Act of 1949, Title I: Urban Renewal Intended to redevelop communities The RESULTS Massive Business/Residental Dislocation Older, working-class neighborhoods targeted for urban renewal Thousands of minority families relocated to other neighborhoods or public housing

5 Highway builders found the low-rent districts; 20% of the 41,000 miles in, through, & around urban areas Federal-Aid Highway Act of 1956 National System of Interstate & Defense Highways

6 “Striving for Equity” First Black student, University of Mississippi, 1962 March on Washington, 1963: “I Have a Dream” speech University of Alabama integrated, 1963 Abolition of Poll Tax, 24th Amendment, 1964 Violence in Selma, 1965 Voting Rights Act, 1965 Fair Housing Act, 1968

7 Civil Rights Act of 1964 Title VI No person in the United States shall, on the ground of race, color, or national origin, be:  excluded from participation in,  denied the benefits of, or  subjected to discrimination under any program or activity receiving Federal financial assistance.

8  Protests in Warren County NC, are impetus for General Accounting Office (GAO) Report, 1983  United Church of Christ Report, 1987 Protesting Injustice Environmental Injustice in Site Selection of Hazardous Waste Facilities

9 Environmental Justice Executive Order Reaffirms that each Federal agency must make environmental justice part of its mission by identifying and addressing disproportionately high and adverse human health or environmental effects of its programs, policies and activities on minority and low-income populations.

10 Executive Order on Environmental Justice, 1994

11 Relationship to NEPA

12 NEPA Requirements Evaluating effects –EJ adds: Consideration of distributive effects Providing opportunities for public involvement. –EJ adds: Consideration of barriers and cultural differences

13 Distinctions Between NEPA Requirements and E.O NEPA establishes general requirements concerning the evaluation of effects and the involvement of the public. It does not establish specific rights or standards of protection for specific resources or population groups. NEPA is a procedural statute. It does not require or prohibit specific outcomes, nor does it require findings to be made in order to authorize impacts on a particular resource or population group (e.g., a finding of no practicable alternative).

14 Applies to all classes of action CEs, EAs, EISs

15 Overview of EJ Processes Basic categories of information required. Basic questions asked.

16 Three Basic Steps Identify the Affected Population Estimate the Nature and Extent of Effects Assess Whether the Effects are Equitable

17 Environmental Justice E.O. Addresses Which Groups? Minority - a person who is: –Black/African-American –Hispanic –Asian American –American Indian and Alaskan Native Low-Income – a person whose: –Median household income is at or below the poverty guidelines level -- $20,000 for a family of four (2006)

18 Protected Population Groups MinoritiesTitle VI; EO Low-IncomeEO 12898; Stafford Act Limited English Proficiency EO ElderlyAge Discrimination Act DisabledADA, Rehabilitation Act WomenFederal Highway Act ChildrenEO National OriginTitle VI Sex, Religion, Familial Status and others Fair Housing Act (Title VIII CVA 1968); FAHA

19 Identification of Populations DOT/FHWA Orders: “readily identifiable group of low-income persons who live in geographic proximity, and, if circumstances warrant, geographically dispersed/transient persons” Most use threshold level for percentage of minority or low-income CEQ Guidance: –Minority population of affected area exceeds 50% –Minority population percentage exceeds the percentages in the general population or other appropriate unit of geographic analysis

20 Definition of Effect Adverse effect - t otality of significant individual or cumulative human health or environmental effects Disproportionately high and adverse - an effect that: 1) is predominately borne by a minority and/or low- income population; or 2) will be suffered by the minority and/or low-income population appreciably more severe or greater in magnitude than the adverse effect that will be suffered by the non minority and/or non low-income population.

21 Adverse Effects Include: “Interrelated social and economic effects, which may include, but are not limited to: bodily impairment, infirmity, illness or death; air, noise, and water pollution and soil contamination; destruction or disruption of man-made or natural resources; destruction or diminution of aesthetic values; destruction or disruption of community cohesion or a community’s economic vitality; destruction or disruption of the availability of public and private facilities and services; vibration;... 1 of 2

22 As well as:... adverse employment effects; displacement of persons, businesses, farms, or nonprofit organizations; increased traffic congestion, isolation, exclusion or separation of minority or low-income individuals within a given community or from the broader community; and the denial of, reduction in, or significant delay in the receipt of, benefits of DOT programs, policies, or activities.” (Appendix of U.S. DOT Order) 2 of 2

23 Choosing Effects to Consider for Analysis Planning Agency policy Resource distribution Meet long-term needs of all populations? Project Development EA/EIS categories Applicable laws and regulations Type of Project

24 Standards for approving actions with disproportionate effects Title VI (minority) Substantial overall need exists, and “Alternatives with less adverse effects on protected populations either: – Would have other adverse SEE impacts that are more severe, or – Would involve increased costs of extraordinary magnitude.” E.O. (low income and minority) Avoidance alternatives “are not practicable”; and Additional mitigation measures also “are not practicable.” –Taking into account: – SEE effects of avoiding or mitigating the adverse effects

25 Identifying Protected Populations Methods

26 Questions to Ask Who’s here? Where do they live? (residence) Where do they circulate? (activity spaces)

27 Methods Local Knowledge Threshold Analysis – Large Area Data Spatial Interpolation – Small Area Data Field Survey/Customer Surveys

28 Local Knowledge When to Use: –Initial evaluation and continued quality assurance What to do: –Interviews –Surveys –Focus Groups –Feedback from outreach efforts

29 Threshold Analysis – Large Scale When to use: –Need demographic patterns for large areas –Regional Plans, STIP/TIP, systems analysis What to do: –Define Study Area –Select analysis units (County, tract) –Get data, compute demographic stats –Determine Threshold levels –Identify protected populations

30 Define Study Area Select an area that encompasses all affected areas and populations –Transportation Investment Plan? Statewide. –MPO Long Range Plan? Multi-County. Threshold Analysis What to do: What to do: Define Study Area Define Study Area Select analysis units (tract, block, TAZ) Select analysis units (tract, block, TAZ) Get data, compute demographic stats Get data, compute demographic stats Determine Threshold levels Determine Threshold levels Identify protected populations Identify protected populations

31 Select Analysis Units States Counties Tracts Block Groups TAZ Blocks Threshold Analysis What to do: What to do: Define Study Area Define Study Area Select analysis units (tract, block, TAZ) Select analysis units (tract, block, TAZ) Get data, compute demographic stats Get data, compute demographic stats Determine Threshold levels Determine Threshold levels Identify protected populations Identify protected populations Large-area data Small-area data

32 Compute Demographic Statistics Census Bureau –Summary Files 1 & 3, yr 2000 (compare, yr ’90) Block (1) & Block group (3) level –Census Transportation Planning Package (CTPP) TAZ level –Topologically Integrated Geographic Encoding and Referencing (TIGER) Threshold Analysis What to do: What to do: Define Study Area Define Study Area Select analysis units (tract, block, TAZ) Select analysis units (tract, block, TAZ) Get data, compute demographic stats Get data, compute demographic stats Determine Threshold levels Determine Threshold levels Identify protected populations Identify protected populations

33 Data/Sources for GIS Analysis Demographic U.S. Census Bureau, local planning departments (for updates and detailed forecasts) Topographic U.S. Geological Survey (USGS), metropolitan planning organizations, state departments of natural resources, local planning departments Street network TIGER/Line Census files (available from U.S. Census Bureau), local planning/engineering departments, commercial GIS data vendors

34 Data/Sources for GIS Analysis Land use Local planning departments, city public works departments Accessibility points of interest (local landmarks/activity centers) Local planning departments, neighborhood organizations, geocoded yellow pages Activity centers (major employers, schools, houses of worship, shopping, and public services) Digitally geocoded yellow pages, local (or regional) economic development or planning departments

35 Determine Thresholds Mid-Ohio Regional Planning Commission (MORPC) –Areas where percent minority (or low income) population for a census tract exceeds the average percent minority for the metropolitan area as a whole. GDOT (Statewide plan) –One standard deviation above the mean percent minority population or population in poverty Threshold Analysis What to do: What to do: Define Study Area Define Study Area Select analysis units (tract, block, TAZ) Select analysis units (tract, block, TAZ) Get data, compute demographic stats Get data, compute demographic stats Determine Threshold levels Determine Threshold levels Identify protected populations Identify protected populations

36 Threshold examples The Southern California Association of Governments (SCAG) describes the income level of communities by quintile, so that impacts can be compared for the lowest 20 percent of incomes with other income groups. –Quartiles can also be used

37 Threshold examples The Maryland DOT compares the percent minority or low-income in a census tract or block to the study area as a whole. Tracts or blocks with a “meaningfully greater” percentage are flagged. –“Meaningfully greater” is defined and documented on a study-by-study basis. Additional data sources are recommended for more detailed investigation.

38 Threshold examples The Atlanta Regional Commission defines EJ communities at the census tract level using the following criteria: 1) those with 20 percent or more of population aged 60 years and older; 2) those with 20 percent or more of the population in the lowest income category (less than $20,000 per year), 3) those with non-white population of 50 percent or more; and 4) those areas with 20 percent or more of households without autos.

39 Threshold examples The Punta Gorda, FL MPO defines an environmental justice community as meeting one of three categories: 1. Areas consisting of 20 percent or greater minority composition; 2. Areas in which 20 percent or more of households have an annual income below $10,000; or 3. Areas that have a concentration of single family housing structures valued under $25,000.

40 Threshold examples The Metropolitan Transportation Commission (MTC) in Oakland, CA Using “exceeds the regional average” resulted in selecting half of the zones as “minority” Based on discussions with stakeholders –70 percent or more minority as indicative of “meaningfully greater” –low-income – 200 percent of the federally defined poverty level to reflect the relatively high cost of living in the Bay Area. “communities of concern” were defined as those zones where at least 30 percent of the total population was below the low-income threshold.

41 Identify Populations Evaluation Unit with levels greater than threshold? Higher potential for effects/concern. Threshold Analysis What to do: What to do: Define Study Area Define Study Area Select analysis units (tract, block, TAZ) Select analysis units (tract, block, TAZ) Get data, compute demographic stats Get data, compute demographic stats Determine Threshold levels Determine Threshold levels Identify protected populations Identify protected populations AreaPercent Minority Percent Low- income Level of Concern Threshold value - State of TX Brazoria Co Lower Waller Co Higher

42

43 Limitations of Large Scale Threshold Analysis Populations not distributed uniformly –Variability increases with size of census unit –Statistical studies will yield different results depending on unit analyzed Large-area data less useful when high degree of resolution needed Undercounting of protected populations

44 Spatial Interpolation – Small scale When to use: –Need demographic patterns for small areas –Corridors, Projects– impacts will be localized What to do: –Define Study Area –Select analysis units (Block, Block Group, TAZ) –Overlay demographic data with area of effects –Estimate Demographic characteristics –Compare to threshold levels - Identify protected populations

45 Define Study Area Will vary with impact type –Air-Quality? 1 mile buffer –Visual Impacts? Viewshed –Noise? Contours & Receptors Simplified Approach –Buffer distance that encompasses geographic extent of effects Spatial Interpolation What to do: What to do: Define Study Area Define Study Area Select analysis units (Block, Block Group, TAZ) Select analysis units (Block, Block Group, TAZ) Overlay demographic data with area of effects Overlay demographic data with area of effects Estimate Demographic characteristics Estimate Demographic characteristics Compare to threshold levels – Compare to threshold levels – Identify protected populations

46 Select Analysis Units & Overlay w/ APE Blocks and Block Groups: to assess spatial demographic patterns –Combination. Not all data reported at block level TAZ: If transportation user demographics required Identify census units that fall within APE Spatial Interpolation What to do: What to do: Define Study Area Define Study Area Select analysis units (Block, Block Group, Select analysis units (Block, Block Group,TAZ) Overlay demographic data with area of effects Overlay demographic data with area of effects Estimate Demographic characteristics Estimate Demographic characteristics Compare to threshold levels – Compare to threshold levels – Identify protected populations

47 Demographic Characteristics & Threshold Comparison Same as for large-area data May report values for individual census units Complex and data intensive Analysis requires spreadsheet, database, GIS software knowledge Spatial Interpolation What to do: What to do: Define Study Area Define Study Area Select analysis units (Block, Block Group, TAZ) Select analysis units (Block, Block Group, TAZ) Overlay demographic data with area of Overlay demographic data with area ofeffects Estimate Demographic characteristics Estimate Demographic characteristics Compare to threshold levels – Compare to threshold levels – Identify protected populations

48 Using Non-Census Data to Identify Populations and Needs Charlotte County-Punta Gorda MPO’s Long-Range Transportation Plan Used: Geographic Community Data Property Appraiser’s Data Transportation Disadvantaged Client Data

49 Housing Values in Punta Gorda, FL

50 –HUD apartment complexes that take Section 8 vouchers by county and city –Public and Indian Housing Maps with locations and information about all HUD apartment complexes US DHUD Section 8 Housing

51 U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development

52 HUD projects Multifamily, Elderly/Disabled and IRS Low Income Properties U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development

53 Public Housing Agency ndex.cfm

54 USDA Food Stamps

55 The Black Church Page

56 But mostly... Just push yourself away from your desk and get out there... Courtesy Jumetta Posey, Neighborhood Solutions

57 Meet with representatives of –the county adult and community education agency –English as a Second Language agency –Social Services agency –Employment Security agency representatives Suggested Contacts

58 Analyzing Impacts

59 General thrust: Compare all factors to non-minority and middle and high income population, as appropriate. Where data can be displayed quantitatively and visually, on maps, it will be most useful. GIS will be helpful. Analysis of the factors should show the effects of the transportation plan on the affected communities; differentiating, where possible between the effects on the minority vs. non-minority community, and low income vs middle-high income communities.

60 Regional/Planning-Level Concerns Long-term patterns of transportation investment. Length of time to travel to and from jobs. Coordination of the transportation planning effort with interrelated efforts such as human services transportation, training and employment agencies. Effects of welfare reform, welfare-to-work, access to jobs demands for transportation.

61 Questions to Ask Does the transportation net provide the ability to move people who need jobs to where the jobs are, and then home again, at the appropriate times and without undue time-in-transit? Is the public transit system available at non- standard work hours? (Many lower-skilled and entry jobs require evening, night, and weekend work.)

62 Questions, cont. Is adequate funding being devoted to maintain older areas with high minority populations or is the bulk of funding is being devoted to new projects in newly developing areas? Rates of travel, auto ownership, transit dependency. Who uses which modes? Which modes are more subsidized? What is the efficiency and ease of inter- modal connections? Is the transportation net fragmented, or divided by jurisdictional boundaries which create obstacles to, for example, transfers?

63 Distribution of Households With No Cars

64 Off-Peak Transit Travel Time to Nearest Hospital

65 TIP Project Mapping

66 Mobility Analysis

67 Air Quality Certain ailments have higher incident rate in minority and low-income populations Sensitive populations, including children and elderly, of special concern Emotional impacts of poor visibility, dust, odors, exhaust Cumulative Exposure, multiple sources

68 AQ Basics States/Locals monitor AQ to determine compliance with NAAQS Concentrations of any of five criteria pollutants violate NAAQS? –Attainment status lost Non-attainment areas must prepare SIP Transportation Conformity – TIPs must be consistent with SIPs

69 State of the Practice Identify specific sites (“hot spots”) and regions where standards may be exceeded –Regional: incorporate travel demand information and emissions factors to calculate total regional emissions –Localized: estimate CO concentrations at discrete receptors near worst-case intersections MOBILE6 - EPA model estimates emission factors for vehicles CAL3QHC – air dispersion model estimates CO

70 General AQ Review Use when: Need an initial analysis? Minimal effects expected? Attainment area? Maintenance area not requiring detailed micro-scale analysis? No triggers for conformity determination?

71 What to do Document regional & local air quality Document protected populations in the area Evaluate potential for unequal distributive effects –Map – significant point and mobile sources –Overlay protected population groups –Identify spatial clustering of pollution sources and proximity of protected groups

72 Evaluation Any areas of potentially greater concern? Will the project affect local air quality in these area of concern? –If so, consider more detailed study –If not, can probably conclude that the project would have no distributive adverse AQ effect

73 Micro-Scale Analysis When to use: Regionally significant transportation project in a non-attainment or maintenance area Required by local guidance, rules Controversial project; public scrutiny due to AQ concerns

74 What to do Evaluate where project intersections are relative to protected populations –Number of intersections with a high level of EJ concern? –50% or more in the study area? Proportion of them higher than comparison area? Screen, rank & choose multiple intersections (by LOS, volume, and EJ concern) Model top-ranking intersections

75 Evaluation Where are “EJ Concern” intersections in relation to “Worst Case” intersections? –50% or more in the study area? Proportion of them higher than comparison area? (Substantially borne by?... Suffered in greater magnitude?) Violation/ exceedances at any? Evaluate effects on sensitive receptors

76 Hazardous Materials Define the pattern of known or potential contamination; Correlate pattern with underlying demographic pattern

77 Corridor and Project Assessments Historically done to address impacts to construction costs, schedule, routing, worker exposure & liability Phase I ESA –Site reconnaissance –Records and regulatory database review –Property history/interviews Based on findings, may do more soil/water investigations May pursue clean-up options: Opportunity for offsetting EJ BENEFITS

78 Construction and Operation Review use and control of hazardous materials during construction Siting and establishing: – Construction and demolition debris landfills – Maintenance facilities – Construction staging areas

79 Tiered approach 1. Desktop assessment: Phase I ESA + distributive effects analysis (demographic overlay). –Potential for concern? 2. Computer-based Assessment: GIS, statistical analysis (Validate or Reject subjective impressions from desktop analysis) –e.g. chi-square – is there a probability that the presence of hazardous materials is dependent on EJ variables?

80 Transport: Spills and Releases Screening Method –Identify hazmat routes –Analyze census data for blocks in proximity to roadway (zones of immediate and significant impact – varies by material and conditions) Probability Modeling –Uses material flow survey data (empirical technique: stop trucks, examine shipping papers)

81 Water Quality Generally, improvements to water quality and drainage will be BENEFICIAL Potential, however, for adverse effects if: –EJ pop. is predominant user of the resource, or uses it differently than others –Impacted areas or mitigation areas (e.g. detention ponds) are distributed unequally –Water quality improvements affect aesthetics

82 Safety What would your intuition suggest about low income and minority populations and safety issues? Supporting Studies –Low income children more likely to be struck by vehicles b/c lack of playgrounds encourages them to play in street (Appleyard 1981) –Children living near high volume, high speed roads far more like to be injured/killed by motor vehicles (Roberts, et al. 1995)

83 Pedestrian Street Crossings LOS rating Intersection performance most important –Ped./vehicle conflict most likely there Pedestrian Delay... Too long, and pedestrians will not comply with signals or yield to traffic. Reduce delays at intersections, then: –Will encourage more short trips on foot –Greater safety for those crossing

84 Pedestrian Road Crossing LOS Values are average delays in seconds per pedestrian crossing LOSSignalized Intersection Unsignalized Intersection Non- compliance likelihood A<10<5Low B Low - Mod C Mod D Mod - High E High F> 60> 45Very High

85 Public Involvement One Size DOESN ’ T Fit All

86 Why doesn ’ t one size fit all? Because the PUBLIC is composed of many different segments Upper-income, middle-income and low-income Non-minority and minority Young, middle-aged and elderly Educated and uneducated Transportation independent and dependent 1 st shift and 2 nd/ 3 rd shift workers English speaking and non-English speaking

87 Accommodate Diversity In age, work-schedules, culture, language, incomes In interest level and ability to participate In comfort level & style of communication In values and perspectives

88 Ethnomed

89

90

91

92

93 What ’ s wrong with what we currently do? It is designed for people “like us” and generally doesn’t reach the EJ (low-income and minority) populations

94 Information is provided by websites, newspapers and newsletters Websites assume access to a computer Websites and newspapers assume a disposable income Websites, newspapers and newsletters assume the ability to read and speak English

95 Information is requested by telephone, fax, or mail Is a long distance phone call required? Many in the EJ populations don’t have access to fax or

96 Meetings are held on Tuesday and Thursday nights Many in the EJ populations work two jobs or work 2 nd /3 rd shift jobs Many in the EJ populations are single mothers with children who would need child care Many may be elderly and don’t go out after dark

97 Meetings are held in locations that are inaccessible or unsafe for EJ populations The meeting location may be in our neighborhoods The meeting location may not be near EJ neighborhoods


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