The Civil Tube: Racial Discrimination and Environmental Justice

Low-income black and brown households in the United States often bear the most severe costs of pollution and environmental injustice. Among other health issues, increased rates of asthma, obesity, and cancer are all tied to environmental factors. Perhaps, in no place is the intersection of environment, racism and health better highlighted than in Camden, New Jersey:

Camden has the second highest cancer rate in New Jersey, and the eighth highest in the nation thanks to over 100 toxic waste sites. When the St. Lawrence Cement Company tried to build yet another polluting factory in Camden, citizens banded together and convinced a district court to halt construction. Then the Supreme Court ruled in Alexander v Sandoval that citizens could not sue based on discriminatory effect. In order to block the construction of yet another polluter, citizens would need to show that there was intentional discrimination.

Watch the video and let us know what you think. The clip below is from a longer documentary which can be found here.

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