Latinos and African-Americans breathe in far more deadly air pollution than they are responsible for making, while non-Hispanic white people because breathe in less than they make, based on their buying, driving and living practices. It’s because of their wealth and how much they consume and buy, not because they buy different things.
“These findings confirm what most grassroots environmental justice leaders have known for decades, ‘whites are dumping their pollution on poor people and people of color‘,” said Texas Southern University public affairs professor Robert Bullard, who was not part of the research. Bullard, often called the father of environmental justice, is African-American.
Bullard said his and other past research shows that African-Americans are 79 percent more likely than whites to live where industrial pollution is highest, with people of color overrepresented near Superfund sites and oil refineries.
He said there are far more mostly minority schools within 500 feet of major highways than mostly white schools.
Source: Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences
Read the NY Times reporting on the study.
Read Dr. Robert Bullard and Robert García on transformational change, environmental justice and health equity.