Friday, July 12, 2013

CalEnviroscreen: Ranks Communities by their Environmental Health

The California Environmental Protection Agency recently rolled out CalEnviroscreen, a new California state program that ranks communities by their environmental health and highlights areas most affected by pollution. The program is something that various public-health and environmental groups have long sought: a way of analyzing the combined effects of multiple pollutants along with residents’ susceptibility to their risks.

The report measures air and water pollution, diesel exhaust, toxins and other factors to calculate pollution burdens of communities at the ZIP code level. It also evaluates socioeconomic and health factors such as asthma rates, poverty and ethnicity to determine the population’s vulnerability to pollution.
The final ranking is the product of the pollution and population scores, with the highest scores highlighting the most environmentally impaired communities. Those areas are entitled to funding for environmental cleanup or sustainable development through the state’s greenhouse gas cap-and-trade program. (UT San Diego, 6/8/2013)

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