Environmental Justice   2 comments

My good friend and fellow blogger Jenny recently posted on the heart-breaking story of Anniston, Alabama. She does a good job reviewing this tragic episode, but to sum it up, Anniston was a blue-collar town where Monsanto opened a large manufacturing plant in the 1930s. PCB-containing products were made here, and PCBs ended up in the town’s natural resources. Meanwhile, citizens and employees of the plant got sick, died or moved away.

When I first learned of the Anniston story, I was struck by the blatant class divide between those contaminating the town and those suffering the consequences. This is a sad fact for most cases of environmental pollution. The 2008-2009 Annual Report from the President’s Cancer Panel on Reducing Environmental Risk claims that disadvantaged populations are more likely to work in occupations with higher exposure to toxins, and they are more likely to live in contaminated areas. The report goes on to say that protecting citizens from cancerous toxins in our environment is not just an issue of health anymore, but an issue of environmental justice.

I feel that phrase hit the nail on the head, and we should be analyzing PCB contamination from this framework. I also feel that the culprits committing crimes against environmental justice need to be held accountable for their actions. Who should be footing the bill for the horrendously expensive PCB clean-up operations?


Posted September 9, 2010 by lymphomactivist in Uncategorized

2 responses to “Environmental Justice

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  1. Thanks for responding to the story of Anniston. It’s totally tragic, and the more awareness, the better.

  2. Pingback: Anniston Judge Up For Re-election « LymphomActivist's Blog

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