SFS 3232: Environmental Justice from the Ground Up

4 CreditsEnvironment

The concept of environmental justice (EJ) refers to equal sustainable access to natural resources that are vital for human groups to achieve a meaningful, fulfilling, and happy life, such as access to clean water, to nutritious and pesticide-free food, clean air, and to the benefits of sustainable use of biodiversity. The concept of environmental justice (EJ) combines notions of environmental sustainability and everyday environments with demands for social justice (Agyeman 2013, Walker G. 2012). EJ focuses on the unequitable distribution of environmental risks and governmental protection among people of different economic and ethnic backgrounds (Schlosberg 2009). This concept has a long history in conservation and sustainable development. The modern view derived from the US civil rights movement and advocates’ calls for racial equality with environmental action. Socioeconomically disadvantaged groups across the world have harnessed social justice action to fight against unequitable environmental outcomes, although its origin is much older and can be traced back to historical conflicts for limited natural resources.

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