Environmental Justice

A selective bibliography of materials

To locate the nearest copy, click on “Find in a Library” and enter your zip code.

  Blessed unrest : how the largest movement in the world came into being, and why no one saw it coming / by Paul Hawken. New York : Viking, 2007. ISBN: 9780670038527 0670038520. Describing an unnameable conglomeration of movements to end injustice and defend the earth, Hawken presents no overall program but a strong sense of hope for the future like the mobilization of an immune system for the earth. Heady reading for those who despair for the future of humanity.  Find in a Library. Number of libraries=365


The colors of nature : culture, identity, and the natural world / by Alison Hawthorne Deming; Lauret E Savoy. Minneapolis, Minn. : Milkweed Editions, 2002.

ISBN: 1571312676 9781571312679.

Almost all writing about nature has come from  European-American voices; as a result the genre has lacked the broader perspective necessary for full understanding, especially from the viewpoint of people of color. This collection of essays provides glowing contrast with pieces discussing the links between lands, plants and people, childhood memories of identification with hidden places, and food-raising lifeways, as well as broader perspectives on the shape of nature writing in this country. Find in a Library Number of libraries=316


Confronting environmental racism : voices from the grassroots / by Robert D Bullard. Boston, Mass. : South End Press, 1993. ISBN: 0896084477 : 9780896084476 0896084469 : 9780896084469.

One of the earliest widely-adopted collections of essays for use in college classes, this volume presents a wide variety of grassroots activists describing their sitionas and their work to address them. Particular situations may change but the general truths remain relevant. Find in a Library Number of libraries=705


Dead heat : global justice and global warming / by Tom Athanasiou; Paul Baer

New York : Seven Stories Press, 2002. ISBN: 1583224777 9781583224779

These authors demonstrate that inaction on global warming will cause social inequalities as well as an increased level of general suffering. While their proposed solutions differ little from those of other experts, they argue for ensuring that those solutions operate in a fair manner—guaranteeing both the poor and future generations their fair share.Find in a Library Number of Libraries=179


Diamond : a struggle for environmental justice in Louisiana's chemical corridor / by Steve Lerner. Cambridge, Mass. ; London : MIT, 2006. ISBN: 0262622041 9780262622042. The inspiring story of an African-American town in Louisiana that campaigned for relocation away from the chemical plants that poisoned the area. The company never admitted fault, but the residents organized, obtained a simple measuring technology, and ultimately prevailed using both scientific and legal strategies. Find in a Library. Number of libraries=12.


Dumping in Dixie : race, class, and environmental quality / by Robert D Bullard. Boulder : Westview Press, 1990. ISBN: 0813379547 9780813379548

This is the current edition of one of the first books to bring environmental justice to the attention of mainstream audiences. Five African American communities, empowered by the civil rights movement, link environmentalism with issues of social justice. Find in a Library. Number of libraries = 719


Environmental democracy / by Michael Mason;  London : Earthscan, 1999.   ISBN: 0585382611 9780585382616

How can humans combine civic self-determination and ecological sustainability? Mason advocates environmental democracy: "a participatory and ecologically rational form of collective decision-making; it prioritizes judgments based on long-term generalizable interests, facilitated by communicative political procedures and radicalization of existing liberal rights.” Academic in tone but highly relevant to arguments over social justice.Find in a Library . Number of libraries = 813


Environmental justice and environmentalism : the social justice challenge to the environmental movement / by Ronald D Sandler;  Phaedra C Pezzullo. Cambridge, Mass. : MIT Press, 2007. ISBN: 0262195526 9780262195522 0262693402 9780262693400

Addressing the frequent conflicts between the environmental movement and the environmental justice movement, these ten essays consider such topics as the relationship between the two movements' ethical commitments and activist goals, instances of successful cooperation in U.S. contexts, and the challenges posed to both movements by globalization and climate change. Find in a Library. Number of Libraries = 196


The Environmental justice reader : politics, poetics, & pedagogy / by Joni Adamson; Mei Mei Evans; Rachel Stein. Tucson, Arz. : University of Arizona Press, 2002. ISBN: 0816522065 9780816522064 0816522073 9780816522071. More engagingly written than most college-level anthologies, this collection provides a good sense of the broad sweep of environmental justice issues. The articles on politics cover a variety of specific situations and general trends, including critical questioning of authorities that fail to effectively address health problems. The pieces on Poetics address cultural concerns, including those of European American counterculture activists, and the ones on pedagogy address educational issues, with two pieces strongly relevant to college faculty members. Find in a Library. Number of libraries=483


Environmentalism unbound exploring new pathways for change / by Robert Gottlieb; Cambridge, Mass. : MIT Press, 2001. ISBN: 0585388504 9780585388502.

Robert Gottlieb calls for reframing and linking the movements for environmental justice and pollution prevention. Environmentalists must address such vital issues of everyday life as workplace safety, healthy communities, and food security. Find in a Library.Number of Libraries = 973


Faces of environmental racism : confronting issues of global justice / by Laura Westra;  Bill E Lawson. Lanham, MD : Rowman & Littlefield Publishers, 2001. ISBN: 0742512487 9780742512481 0742512495 9780742512498

Case studies of instances of environmental racism, both domestic and international. The essays explore the justice of current environmental practices, asking such questions as whether cost-benefit analysis is an appropriate analytic technique and whether there are alternate routes to sustainable development in the South. Find in a Library. Number of libraries = 704


From the ground up : environmental racism and the rise of the environmental justice movement/ by Luke W Cole;  Sheila R Foster. New York : New York University Press, 2001.  ISBN: 0814715370 9780814715376 0814715362 9780814715369

A critical examination of the movement for environmental justice, with case studies of communities struggling against corporate polluters. Find in a Library.Number of Libraries = 814


Growing smarter : achieving livable communities, environmental justice, and regional equity / by Robert D Bullard. Cambridge, Mass. : MIT Press, 2007. ISBN: 0262026104 9780262026109 0262524708 9780262524704

The senior scholar of the environmental justice movement calls upon the smart growth movement, which aims to combat urban and suburban sprawl by promoting livable communities based on pedestrian scale, diverse populations, and mixed land use, to address issues of social equity and environmental justice. Find in a Library. Number of Libraries = 181


Just sustainabilities : development in an unequal world / by Julian Agyeman;  Robert D Bullard;  Bob Evans. Cambridge, Mass. : MIT Press, 2003. ISBN: 0262011999 9780262011990 0262511312 9780262511315. Three experts in environmental justice and sustainability address f the links between environmental quality and human equality, and between sustainability and environmental justice. They argue that social and environmental justice within and between nations should be an integral part of government policies. .Find in a Library. Number of Libraries = 430


New perspectives on environmental justice : gender, sexuality, and activism / ed. by Rachel Stein. New Brunswick, N.J. : Rutgers University Press, 2004.  ISBN: 0813534267 9780813534268 0813534275 9780813534275. Women form most of the leadership of the environmental justice movement; this collection reflects their outlook on a range of issues like children's environmental-health campaigns, cancer research, AIDS/HIV activism, the Environmental Genome Project, and popular culture. Find in a Library. Number of Libraries = 454


Our backyard : a quest for environmental justice / by Gerald Robert Visgilio;  Diana M Whitelaw. Lanham : Rowman & Littlefield Publishers, 2003. ISBN: 0742523624 9780742523623 0742523632 9780742523630. A college-level survey of the history, status and dilemmas of the environmental justice movement. Relatively brief and broad, so would make a good introduction to the topic.Find in a Library. Number of libraries = 470


A people's ecology : explorations in sustainable living / by Gregory Cajete. Santa Fe, N.M. : Clear Light Publishers, 1999. ISBN: 1574160281 9781574160284. Environmental justice advocates tend to emphasize a wide view of what constitutes "the environnment", as exemplified in these essays dealing primarily with the diet and health of the native peoples of the United States and Mexico. Contrasting traditional diets and food raising practices with those of European Americans, the contributors point out that current Americans seem to seek the state of integration and health supported by the traditional ways. The only social change strategies suggested here operate through retailers rather than through laws or regulations. Find in a Library Number of libraries=200


Power, justice, and the environment : a critical appraisal of the environmental justice movement / by David N Pellow;  Robert J Brulle. Cambridge, MA : MIT, ©2005.

ISBN: 0262162334 9780262162333 0262661934 9780262661935. A critical appraisal of the environmental justice movement’s effectiveness, comparing it to the civil rights movement, discussing new strategies and placing them in the context of globalization. Find in a Library. Number of libraries = 287


The quest for environmental justice : human rights and the politics of pollution / by Robert D Bullard. San Francisco : Sierra Club Books, 2005. ISBN: 1578051207 9781578051205 1578051525 9781578051526. Professor Bullard updates his earlier work, Unequal Protection: Environmental Justice and Communities of Color, with newer accounts of communities’ struggles in a more global context. Find in a Library. Number of Libraries = 572


Sustainable Communities and the Challenge of Environmental Justice / by Julian Agyeman. New York : New York University Press, 2005. ISBN: 0814707106 9780814707104 0814707114 9780814707111. Just sustainability, a new paradigm for cooperation between environmentalism and social justice, is not only necessary but a current reality in a few organizations like Boston's Alternatives for Community and Environment. Find in a Library. Number of Libraries = 384.


This fissured land : an ecological history of India / by Madhav Gadgil;  Ramachandra Guha. Berkeley : University of California Press, 1993

ISBN: 0520076214 9780520076211 0520082966 9780520082960. Considered the first ecological history of India, this book first provides a general theory of ecological history, then an ecological interpretation of the caste system, and finally a description of the effect of “modernization” on traditionally sustainable lifeways. Find in a Library. Number of libraries = 287


Toxic exposures: Contested illnesses and the environmental health movement / by Phil Brown. New York : Columbia University Press, 2007. ISBN: 9780231129480 0231129483 9780231503259 0231503253 Brown documents and analyzes the contest between the biomedical model of health that emphasizes personal responsibility for one's own well-being and a more pro-social outlook that points to environmental insults, especially those that disproportionately burden poor people and people of color. Efforts to ameliorate breast cancer, asthma, and Gulf War Syndrome all involve clashes between researchers who cautiously await scientific studies that may never be funded and citizen activists who want society to take immediate action. Brown's analysis is particularly valuable for connecting these disparate struggles to the precautionary approach, wherein industries must prove that their practices are harmless. Find in a Library. Number of libraries = 405


Unequal protection : environmental justice and communities of color / by Robert D Bullard. San Francisco : Sierra Club Books, 1994. ISBN: 0871564505 : 9780871564504. Written by one of the major academic supporters of the Environmental Justice movement, this book grew out of the First National People of Color Environmental Leadership Summit. A variety of case studies portray the range of social problems created by environmental racism, leavened with stories of successful community campaigns to address some of them. Although some of the stories are old and need updating, this remains one of the more accessible books  for teenagers on this topic. Find in a Library Number of libraries=802.


Some Useful Web Links


Community Coalition for Environmental Justice This is the primary Environmental Justice organization in Seattle, Washington, USA, the home of ecolibrarian. CCEJ’s mission is to achieve environmental and economic justice in low-income communities and communities of color. We believe that everyone, regardless of race or income, has the right to a clean and healthy community.


Asian Pacific Environmental Network APEN seeks to empower low-income Asian Pacific Islander (API) communities to achieve environmental and social justice. APEN believes that the environment includes everything around us: where we live, work and play. And we strive to build grassroots organizations that will improve the health, well-being and political strength of our communities.


Environmental Justice Action Group  The Environmental Justice Action Group(EJAG) is a community-based, membership-driven organization founded by a group of NE Portland residents in 1996 to address the significant and disproportionate environmental and public health hazards faced by people of color and low-income housing residents of the N/NE community. EJAG is dedicated to the elimination of environmental hazards through community education and action involving those most affected by these hazards. EJAG's emphasis on community awareness and involvement is exemplified by our motto, "a community that educates and speaks out for itself can best protect itself."


Environmental Justice Resource Center is the closest site to a national resource center for EJ activity. It includes basic information like the Principles of Environmental Justice as well as resource materials like the Curriculum Resource Guidebook to assist college instructors in developing relevant syllabi. It also has a current events section with feature articles about EJ related developments.


Indigenous Environmental Network "A network of Indigenous Peoples empowering Indigenous Nations and communities
towards sustainable livelihoods, demanding environmental justice and maintaining the Sacred Fire of our traditions." Program focuses include Native Energy and Climate Change, Toxics and Environmental Health, Mining, Sustainable Communities, Bioethics, Globalization, and Water.


National Black Environmental Justice Network is a national preventive health and environmental/economic justice network with affiliates in 33 states and the District of Columbia. NBEJN members include some of the nation's leading African American grassroots environmental justice activists, community organizers, researchers, lawyers, public health specialists, technical experts, and authors addressing the intersection of public health, environmental hazards, and economic development within Black communities. The site includes fact sheets on childhood lead poisoning, asthma, and cancer.


University of Michigan Environmental Justice Program is an excellent source of academic preparation for scholars of environmental justice issues.


last update 23 December 2008