Professor Jonathan K. London of the Center for Regional Change at UC Davis spoke to ECOS at our September 18th Board Meeting about their work on Environmental Justice. The Center for Regional Change has grown into a well-known policy-oriented research organization that aims to create linkages between the university and the region of which it is a part.
Professor London presented several tactics for how an organization such as the ECOS coalition can do more to help improve social equity in the Sacramento region. London directed us to get to know the Center for Regional Change’s report called “Capitalizing Environmental Justice in the Sacramento Region.” The report assesses the dire conditions of environmental injustice confronting low-income communities and communities of color in California’s Capital Region. However, local residents and regional leaders have begun to develop a cohesive framework for action to improve conditions in their communities, and to contribute to the region’s burgeoning Environmental Justice movement.
London reminded us of the plethora of information offered by CalEnviroScreen, including some analyses done by the Center for Regional Change on mapping pollution levels and drinking water contamination in the Sacramento region.
London also highlighted a tool called “IVAN” (Identifying Violations Affecting Neighborhoods). IVAN is an Environmental Monitoring System that connects the community with real people that can help solve local environmental problems.
The presentation emphasized the importance of environmental injustices to people living in rural areas and engaging them in environmental advocacy work. Connecting with neighborhoods, working to help bolster affordable housing options and joining food justice efforts are all also effective.
ECOS members in attendance were appreciative of the presentation, its cutting-edge research and the new tools for advocacy with which we left. Thank you to Jonathan K. London!
You can suggest future speakers to present to ECOS by emailing our office at office[at]ecosacramento[dot]net.