UNM School of Law Welcomes National Leaders in Environmental Justice to Discuss Cumulative Impacts on Overburdened Communities
April 12, 2021 - Aaron Villalpando
View the Program Here.
On April 7, 2021, the UNM School of Law welcomed two national leaders in environmental justice for a discussion of cumulative impacts of pollution on local communities. Richard Moore, from Los Jardines Institute of Albuquerque, and Dr. Nicky Sheats, of the John S. Watson Institute for Urban Policy and Research in New Jersey, were both recently appointed by the Biden administration to the new White House Environmental Justice Advisory Council. The presenters discussed evolving efforts to identify "overburdened" communities, or communities experiencing disproportionate adverse impacts from pollution. Dr. Sheats presented evidence of the strong correlation between overburdened communities and communities of color or low-income communities. The presenters also discussed accelerating policy initiatives to address cumulative impacts, including a 2016 cumulative impacts ordinance in Newark, New Jersey, recent legislation passed by the State of New Jersey, and national legislation currently pending in Congress.
The distinguished speakers took the time to listen to questions and provide thoughtful responses. The event drew a diverse crowd that included activists, law students, lawyers, grassroots organizations, and the public health community.