Science Group Praises New Bill to Defend Environmental Justice

Statement from Andrew Rosenberg, Union of Concerned Scientists

Published Oct 23, 2017

WASHINGTON (October 23, 2017)—A new bill introduced by New Jersey Senator Cory Booker and California Representative Raul Ruiz would put the principles of environmental justice into law. This bill would make protecting the health and safety of communities of color and low-income communities a clear priority for the federal government. That’s an important step to protect communities, according to the Union of Concerned Scientists (UCS).

Below is a statement by Andrew Rosenberg, director of the Center for Science and Democracy at UCS.

“Across the country, people of color and low-income families shoulder the burden of environmental and health threats. It’s these communities—people’s homes, schools and places of work—that bear bigger risks. This bill would give such communities the information and the tools they need to advocate on their own behalf.

“People living on the fencelines of chemical facilities, power plants and hazardous waste sites know better than anyone that they’re unfairly being put in danger. It’s a pervasive form of discrimination—and we need to put science to work to fix it. This bill was shaped with the help of environmental justice advocates who understand the risks to their communities and have clear, credible solutions to the problem. Congress needs to listen. 

“The Trump administration has discarded both science and justice when it comes to public health. This bill would make sure this administration (and future ones) will not evade this vital responsibility.”