We did not plan to create this episode when we began the season, but when we learned of the murder of George Floyd, Ahmaud Arbery, Breonna Taylor, Tony McDade, and other POC citizens, we stopped, evaluated our objective through a civil rights lens, and realized we couldn’t NOT share what we found.
I recorded this mini-episode after reading dozens of articles on the subject of climate justice, sometimes referred to as intersectional environmentalism or the intersection of climate and social justice. What I learned is that many without power have been actively trying to disassociate the conversations of climate and social justice for decades, but that these topics cannot be segregated because sustainability is defined with three parameters: ecological, cultural, and economic. Without addressing the egregious disparity that is systemic in our country, and face the facts of how systemic racism means black and brown communities are disproportionately being affected by the crisis, we cannot begin to fathom true progress.
I believe equity and compassion are at the core of sustainability work, and hope this episode helps others realize this too.
- NAACP’s 2010 Climate Justice Initiative toolkit.
- Climate and Social Justice
- Climate Change is a Social Justice Issue
- BlackLivesMatter, Criminalization, and Disaster Justice
- Climate is the Newest Gentrifying Force, and its Effects are Already Reshaping Cities
- Fumes Across the Fence-Line: The Health Impacts of Air Pollution from Oil & Gas Facilities on African American Communities
- Baltimore neighborhood identified as ‘ground zero’ for local effects of climate crisis
- Green Collar Workers: An Emerging Workforce in the Environmental Sector
- No, climate action can’t be separated from social justice