Newark Exhibit Informing Community On Environmental Injustice
If you walk into the Express building in Newark, you’ll see dozens of people walking through the Climates of Inequality Exhibit.
NEWARK, N.J. – If you walk into the Express building in Newark, you’ll see dozens of people walking through the Climates of Inequality Exhibit.
“Climates of inequality was created by over 500 students, community partners in over 20 different cities from Miami to Mayagüez, Puerto Rico,” said Liz Sevcenko, director of the Humanities Action Lab. all of them dug into the history of their own community and shared their story of environmental and climate justice and their vision for the future.”
According to organizers, environmental injustice affects some more than others.
“The most marginalized communities African Americans, Latin, indigenous, low-wage earners are relegated to particular parts of anybody’s city and often these are the places that have the worst environmental contaminants,” Sevcenko said.
Newark is one of these cities.
Melissa Miles is the Environmental Justice manager for IronBound Community Corporation.
“Newark specifically the north and south wards are areas that deal with goots movements from the ports which is trucks, planes, cranes, ships, as well as waste infrastructure and energy infrastructure, all of that is polluting,” Miles said.
To correct these issues New Jersey’s Attorney General and the Department of Environmental Protection announced the filing of six new enforcement actions targeting polluters in minority and lower-income communities throughout New Jersey, one of which was Newark.
Through this legal action the contaminated and long-abandoned properties in those areas will be improved.
Organizers hope these legal actions and the exhibit will help educate people.
“I think it’s important for everyone to see that and to just tell that story because not everyone knows what’s happening and how they can be a part of the solution in terms of not allowing communities to become sacrifice zones,” said Ana Baptista, Assistant Professor of Professional Practice in Environmental Policy and Sustainability Management at The New School.
The exhibit is interactive, you can hear people’s first hand accounts through videos, images and audio.
Climates of Inequality will be open to the public until Dec. 15.