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Women in the News: Environmental Racism By Meredith Williams and Nicole Tuttle.

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Presentation on theme: "Women in the News: Environmental Racism By Meredith Williams and Nicole Tuttle."— Presentation transcript:

1 Women in the News: Environmental Racism By Meredith Williams and Nicole Tuttle

2 What is environmental racism?  Targeting communities of color for toxic waste disposal and the citing of polluting industries  Excluding people of color from environmental groups, decision-making boards, commission, and regulatory bodies

3 Studies on Environmental Racism  3 out of 5 Americans of color live in communities with uncontrolled toxic waste sites  Race is the best predictor of exposure to environmental hazards  Abandoned hazardous waste sites in minority communities takes 20% longer than those of Euro-American areas to be placed on the national priority list for cleanup  The U.S. exported 139, 000 tons of toxic waste in one year alone

4 North River Sewage Treatment Plant (NRSTP)  This plant located in Harlem, New York, is designed to treat 170 million gallons of raw sewage daily.  The $1.1 billion construction project was one of the largest non-military projects in this half of the century.  The plant’s construction was scheduled to be completed in four years, but scheduling problems occurred. They continued under and expedient schedule which led to numerous alterations and short cuts.

5 Problems with the North River Plant  General decline in health conditions in the community  Year round mosquito population  Increase in population and size of sewer rats  Noxious odors  The plant blocks the scenic view of the Hudson River

6 Coalitions Against North River Plant  West Harlem Independent Democratic Club (WHID)  Community Coalition Against North River (CCANR)  West Harlem Environmental Action (WHE ACT)

7 River Bank State Park  The park was built to ameliorate some of the negative impacts of the plant.  The park was a controversial issue.  The 28 acre facility features a football field, tennis courts, ice skating rink, carousel, six restaurants, an amphitheater, and an Olympic-size swimming pool.

8 Where else do we see environmental racism?  Warren County, North Carolina and Anniston, Alabama -Toxic Waste Landfill -PCB contaminated soil and water  East St. Louis, Illinois -Lanson Chemical Plant -Cancer and immune system disorders  East Liverpool, Ohio (Appalachia) -Waste Technology International (WTI) -Cancerous Emissions  Emelle, Alabama -Waste Management Inc -Eutaw Aquifer  New Zealand -Women of the Pacific -Global Fund for Women

9 Underlying Factors Related to the Role of Race  Availability of cheap land  Lack of opposition  Lack of mobility  Poverty

10 Toxic Waste and Race in the United States  United Church of Christ’s Commission for Racial Justice  A national report of the racial and socio- economic characteristics of communities with hazardous waste sites  Environmental racism  National Law Journal  President Clinton’s Executive Order 12898

11 What can we do?  Know your rights  Maintain knowledge  Stay involved in the process  Let your voice be heard!

12 Questions to think about…  Why are minority communities targeted more often than low-income communities? -Why is race focused on more often than class?  If these environmental hazards must go somewhere, where should they go?  Do you think that people are becoming more aware of environmental racism? -If not, how can we raise the awareness of society?

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