What’s ‘environmental justice’?
Environmental injustice arises where developments create environments which induce health and other costs for local residents, regions and/or workers. Damages include production and spread of toxic wastes, pollution of water, soil and air, erosion and ecological damage of landscapes, water systems, plants and animals. In cases of environmental injustice these types of impacts are unfairly distributed, most often affecting communities who did not participate in making decisions about if, when and how such developments arose.
What are we doing?
Our 2017 achievement was the Just Transitions from Coal in Australia map (https://ejatlas.org/featured/just-transitions-australia).
A ‘just transition’ refers to fast tracking actions that will reduce carbon emissions without disadvantaging workers and communities.
This the latest of several featured case studies on the Environmental Justice Atlas (http://ejatlas.org/), a global platform mapping environmental conflicts around the world.
More than 2,320 cases of environmental injustice have been mapped on this interactive database to provide open access to details of socio-environmental conflicts worldwide.
The work of hundreds of activist–scholar collaborators — academic researchers, environmental non-government organisations (ENGOs) and concerned citizens — EJAtlas features conflicts including biodiversity conservation, mining, climate justice and waste management.
You can be involved too — see more below.
Sustainable Living Festival
In 2016, we initiated a Sustainable Living Festival event highlighting environmental justice campaigns by interviewing key activists in campaigns against the spread of toxic chemicals, unconventional gas exploration and mining, climate change, waste and landfills and advocating for forest protection and just transitions from coal.
Listen to some of the speakers in these podcasts:
- Chloe Aldenhoven (Coal and Gas Free Victoria) with Leigh Ewbank (FoE) discussing coal seam gas
- Anthony Amis (FoE) with Leigh Ewbank on pesticides and the online pesticides map
- David Spratt (Climate Code Red) with Anitra Nelson on the international and pernicious consequences of climate injustices
The action research AEJ project is open to your involvement and during 2018 we expect to hold events for activists to update existing Australian case studies and develop new ones with the support of the AEJ team.
If you would like to look into a specific case and communities, have any comments or suggestions, or you’d like to be involved in any way — by offering data on cases of environmental injustice, by interviewing campaign and community experts, by collating data into case studies and creating fact sheets — please contact: [email protected]