Monday, March 03, 2014

New York City Council Environmental Justice Hearing


By Norris McDonald

AAEA New York Director Dan Durett and I testified at the New York City Council Committee on Environmental Protection on Friday, February 28, 2014.  The title of the hearing was: "Oversight - Air quality impacts and ways to measure and address them in NYC environmental justice communities."  The committee has a new chairman, Donovan Richards, and apparently a refreshing new interest in examining environmental justice issues in New York City.

Donovan Richards, Norris McDonald

AAEA - NY is promoting a New York City Environemental Justice Act that would provide protection for environmental justice communities. AAEA derived the legislation from a draft of the National Environmental Justice Act [at the link behind the NY EJ Act].

It was an incredible four hour hearing.  Stakeholders from throughout the city testified to the need for protection from disproportionate pollution.  Leading environmental justice activists presented the chair and committee with testimonial after testimonial about the vulnerability and lack of protection from pollution. 

The first panel included the New York City Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) Commissioner Carter Strickland and New York City Department of Health and Mental Hygiene Assistant Commissioner Thomas Matte. 

My testimony focused on asthma and AAEA New York Office Director Dan Durett's testimony focused on pollution sites.

Hearing video [AAEA appearance begins at 2:20.50]             

No comments: