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Natural Awakenings Tucson

Environmental Justice from the White House

New Environmental Justice Initiative

In April 2023, President Biden signed an executive order to expand the administration’s goals to address persistent environmental injustices involving toxic pollution, underinvestment in infrastructure and services and other harms due to a legacy of racial discrimination. Communities with environmental justice concerns face greater burdens due to climate change.

The executive order establishes the Office of Environmental Justice at the White House to coordinate efforts to implement the new directives. It also requires federal agencies to notify communities in the event of a release of toxic substances; directs agencies to facilitate meaningful public participation and just treatment in agency decision-making; directs agencies to identify and address information gaps related to environmental justice and make information on environmental and health concerns more publicly accessible; and implements a scorecard to evaluate federal agencies’ environmental justice efforts.