Social Resilience & Climate Justice
While everyone is impacted, climate change affects vulnerable communities worse than others, especially low-income communities. These low-income communities already suffer from existing inequities which include: a lack of economic investments, disproportionately high levels of industrial pollution, greater public health risks, high poverty, inadequate social services, a lack of affordable housing and access to education, among other disparities. Adding the impacts of climate change, such as extreme flooding, extreme urban heat effects, drought, and poor air quality, further exacerbates these inequities.
Climate justice is an equity-centered approach that responds to the disproportionate impacts of climate change on low-income people of color. Climate justice requires:
Acknowledgment of the social, economic and health inequities that low income communities of color have historically faced and that are exacerbated by climate change.
Action that prioritizes and targets economic resources, clean energy policies, and health protection initiatives in low-income communities of color to ensure that the transition to a clean energy economy occurs on the same timescale for all communities.
Fair and just allocation of the benefits and burdens associated with climate change, which includes equitable access to climate change solutions.
Focus on local air pollutants as well as global climate pollutants.
Increasing access to clean and sustainable technologies, resilient infrastructure and clean energy workforce opportunities within low income communities of color, first and most.