Environmental Justice

New Paper Addresses California Air District Authority to End NOx Pollution from Household Appliances

Most household appliances, like furnaces and water heaters, are powered by fossil fuels and emit nitrogen oxides (NOx)—toxic and highly reactive gases that endanger human health and the environment. To address this problem, air districts have adopted policies to reduce NOx pollution from appliances, and others across California are considering similar proposals. In a new …

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Environmental Justice, Truck Pollution, and the Biden EPA

How will EPA integrate EJ into its rule making? The answer remains murky.

EPA recently released a notice of proposed rulemaking for pollution from new heavy-duty vehicles. I was interested to see how environmental justice figured into the analysis, looking for clues about how the Biden Administration plans to make EJ part of decision making.  What I found wasn’t very enlightening. Perhaps they’re still trying to come up …

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Registration Is Open for the 2022 California Water Law Symposium

California’s Most Important Annual Water Law Conference–Law Student Organized!–Set for April 9th

Registration is now open for California’s 2022 Water Law Symposium, scheduled for Saturday, April 9th. U.C. Davis School of Law has the honor of hosting this year’s Symposium, which is an extraordinary event in two respects: first, it is organized entirely by law students (rather than law firms, water organizations, law professors or commercial vendors).  …

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It’s Not All CEQA’s Fault

Public process can actually be pretty important.

I first wrote a version of this post way back in July 2021, when Ezra Klein dropped a couple of lines knocking the California Environmental Quality Act (CEQA) into one of the op-eds The New York Times loves to perennially run about how California is actually the worst (I’m sorry it can’t be 80 degrees …

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California Legislators Call for More Stringent Requirements for Oil and Gas

Drill site on Jefferson Blvd. in south Los Angeles. Photo credit: Faces of Fracking, Flickr

Students in UCLA’s California Environmental Legislation and Policy Clinic partner with State Senator Sydney Kamlager to draft letter to CalGEM on proposed public health rule

This post is co-authored by Julia Stein and Beth Kent. Neighborhood oil and gas extraction poses serious public health and environmental risks to communities across California – and campaigns by local advocates and political leaders over the last decade have pressed state agencies and local governments, including the City of Los Angeles and Los Angeles …

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Air Quality as Environmental Justice

National air quality standards may be among the most powerful levers for environmental justice.

The environmental justice movement began with a focus on neighborhood struggles against toxic waste facilities and other local pollution sources.  The EJ focus now includes other measures to ensure that vulnerable communities get the benefit of climate regulations. The most powerful tool for assisting those communities, however, may be the National Ambient Air Quality Standards …

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Why CEQA is a Useful Tool for Environmental Justice Communities in California

A local environmental justice group’s victory in a recent California Environmental Quality Act (“CEQA”) exemption case highlights the importance of CEQA for environmental justice communities in California. After the group, Cudahy Alliance for Justice, challenged the City of Cudahy’s approval of an elementary and middle school on a hazardous waste site, Los Angeles Superior Court …

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Justice 40 and Identifying Disadvantaged Communities

White House

Why race is an important factor to consider

Last Friday, the White House Council on Environmental Quality released its long-awaited Climate and Economic Justice Screening Tool. The screening tool will guide the Biden Administration’s implementation of its Justice40 Initiative that directs that 40 percent of certain federal investment programs benefit disadvantaged communities. However, like may legal scholars predicted and the White House foreshadowed, …

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Jim Crow and the Fossil Fuel Industry

The fossil fuel industry has yet to escape its discriminatory past.

This being Black History Month, I thought it would be worthwhile looking at the fossil fuel industry’s racial history.  Given the historic concentration of the oil and coal industries in the South, it is no surprise to find that these industries have also been deeply entangled with Jim Crow and its legacy of discrimination. Oil …

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L.A. City’s Oil and Gas Ban: A Major Win for Environmental Justice Communities

A vote last week by the Los Angeles City Council will initiate a process to ban new oil and gas wells and phase out existing wells within the City’s limits. This historic vote is a major victory for environmental justice communities that have been disproportionately impacted by the harmful impacts of neighborhood oil drilling for …

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