Uniform TitleJust policies? a multiple case study of state environmental justice policies
NameBaptista, Ana (author), Andrews, Clinton (chair), Lake, Robert (internal member), Fischer, Frank (internal member), Forester, John (outside member), Rutgers University, Graduate School - New Brunswick,
SubjectPlanning and Public Policy,
DescriptionOver the last two decades, more than thirty states have implemented explicit environmental justice policies and programs in response to a plethora of empirical research and grassroots advocacy focused on environmental burdens in low income and minority communities throughout the country. Despite this increasing trend towards state institutionalization of environmental justice issues, there is little research examining the relevance, effectiveness and general impact of state government responses on environmental justice. Does this trend to implement state level policies make an impact in disadvantaged communities? Furthermore, how relevant are these state policies in terms of addressing the complex nature of environmental injustice? Using in depth and multiple case studies, the effectiveness and relevance of some of the leading state environmental justice policies in the nation are examined including New Jersey, New York, California, Massachusetts, and Connecticut. The in depth case studies of New Jersey's policies reveal how the state's institutionalization of environmental justice drives the regionalization of the environmental justice movement and their articulation of broader social justice goals. The New Jersey cases also support the findings of the multiple state studies, which reveal a distinct process of implementation of environmental justice policies. In this implementation model, states begin by recognizing environmental injustice as a distributive problem in environmental management terms and then turn to largely symbolic, procedural mechanisms to respond to these problems without addressing the underlying structural inequalities that fuel environmental injustices. The case studies reveal that environmental injustice is tied to deeper forms of structural inequality that require more profound shifts in the way the state addresses economic and environmental problems in poor, minority communities. The existing state policies are inadequate to meet this task and will require recognition of and commitment to addressing the multi-dimensional nature of environmental injustice as a distributive, procedural and structural issue in order to effectively implement change.
NoteIncludes bibliographical references (p. 273-281).
CollectionGraduate School - New Brunswick Electronic Theses and Dissertations
Organization NameRutgers, The State University of New Jersey
RightsThe author owns the copyright to this work.