2013 March 20
Cross-posted from the CEQ blog; http://www.whitehouse.gov/administration/eop/ceq/blog
By EPA Acting Administrator Bob Perciasepe and CEQ Chair Nancy Sutley
All Americans deserve to have clean air to breathe, safe water to drink and healthy communities in which to raise their families. These things are an essential part of what it means to live in America.
But too often, America’s low-income and minority communities bear the brunt of the nation’s pollution. That also means that these communities are disproportionately affected by the many serious – and costly – illnesses that are linked to pollution, and that they are less attractive to the businesses and investments that help create thriving neighborhoods. And unfortunately, these groups often have little say in the decision-making process that can fix these inequities.
The Obama Administration is working to address these disparities. As part of an initiative led by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and the White House Council on Environmental Quality (CEQ), Americans across the country are benefiting from new approaches by Federal agencies to ensure healthy, thriving communities.
In new annual reports, agencies show the steps they have taken to ensure they are meeting environmental justice goals, including engaging overburdened communities early and often in decision-making, integrating environmental justice into grant application processes and agency programs, and improving the tools and methods used to identify and address concerns……(read more).