Equity & Environmental Justice


The Issue 

Climate change is a problem that is expected to drastically impact low-income communities. Communities of color, with lower educational attainment and lower household income are disproportionately burdened by extreme heat, air pollution and a variety of other environmental conditions that compound when considering the differential quality of healthcare and opportunity experienced by different communities. Urban centers lined with concrete in impoverished communities can often become heat islands that produce unbearable temperatures in the summer while their proximity to busy interstates exposes residents to high levels of pollution. While some individuals may be able to relocate to avoid rising sea levels and storm-prone areas, not everyone has this option. Those who are able to move can escape these effects while those who cannot afford to do so will remain impacted. The new front in the battle for equality is the fight for climate justice.

Our Experts

Susan Anenberg
Director, Climate & Health Institute
Professor and Chair of Environmental and Occupational Health 
GW Milken Institute School of Public Health

Kelvin Fong
Assistant Professor, Environmental and Occupational Health
GW Milken Institute School of Public Health

Gaige Kerr
Senior Research Scientist
GW Milken Institute School of Public Health

Neelu Tummala
Co-Director, Climate & Health Institute 
Assistant Professor of Surgery
GW School of Medicine and Health Sciences

Lisa Palmer
Senior Editor & Education Lead, Planet Forward
Research Professor of Science Communication
GW Columbian College of Arts and Sciences