COMMUNITY CENTER|Environmental Justice

The subject of environmental justice is important, sensitive, and hard to measure. Advocates make a strong case that poor communities and communities of color can bear more than their share of environmental burdens - but in which places, and to what extent?

Scorecard profiles environmental burdens in every community in the U.S., identifying which groups experience disproportionate toxic chemical releases, cancer risks from hazardous air pollutants, or proximity to Superfund sites and polluting facilities emitting smog and particulates. Environmental justice analyses are also available in spanish.

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To find the areas where particular kinds of disparities exist, go to the Locator for Unequal Burdens.

  • Current definitions of environmental justice take in a broader scope of issues than what available data can address.

  • Data available to measure environmental conditions at the local level have many limitations and cannot give a complete picture of those conditions.

  • Finding types of data that are available for every locality in the U.S. is especially difficult (even though data for specific neighborhoods and areas may be extensive).

  • The limits of the data define the boundaries of what Scorecard can offer and of how it can be interpreted.