The scoop Flint, Michigan is still suffering from an unconscionable public health crisis six years later. We built a lengthy timeline of environmental injustice since 2014. Check it out.
Why it matters Despite municipal and federal efforts to remove the lead pipelines delivering water to residential areas, Flint residents and visitors are still wary. They often only drink bottled water, distrusting the city officials who lied to them for so many years and told them their water was “safe.”
Big picture Moving forward, Flint officials have a responsibility to ensure that every single lead pipe is pulled from the ground, including pipes that don’t currently connect to residents’ homes. They must file reimbursement requests to fund research to further decrease the lead parts per billion in drinking water to at least convey trust to rightfully dubious residents.
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What to know
- Wealthy countries are perpetuating climate issues, but the strongest impact is felt in poorer nations.
- Between 1850 and 2011, developed countries accounted for 79% of global carbon dioxide emissions.
- Developing countries in South Asia, Africa, The Caribbean and Latin America are especially vulnerable to the effects of climate change such as hurricanes, floods, and heatwaves but have limited resources to recover or avert these crises,leading to poverty and conflict.
- By 2050, there could be 140 million climate change migrants.
Why it Matters
- Climate change and social justice are inextricably linked
- As we work towards a more sustainable planet, we need to focus on solutions that also address global inequality as a contributing factor.
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How environmental policy works
- Congress enacts laws that enable federal agencies to create environmental regulations
- Under the President’s guidance, the EPA Administrator sets national standards
- State and local governments create and implement the actual policies
- State-level policies can support investment in green energy.
- Local officials set water policy to provide residents access to clean water.
Why your vote matters
- By electing city council members, state congresspeople and representatives who champion environmental policies, voters can make their environmental concerns heard.
The bottom line
- If voters prioritize climate change, politicians will too.
- Though you may feel your vote doesn’t matter in elections, it does.
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The scoop: Given recent developments in fiscal policy, there is a compelling case to be made for a green stimulus package.
The proposal: Create millions of family-sustaining career-track green jobs, deliver strategic investments, Expand public and employee ownership, Make rapid cuts to carbon pollution
Bottom line: The Green Stimulus plan must decidedly advocate for ambitious measures and well-reasoned policies to correct the egregious destruction of American land and improve workers’ conditions nationwide. We must follow suit after several European countries’ green stimulus packages; the world is watching.