What is environment justice, and what does it have to do with pollution prevention?
Environmental Justice and pollution prevention are symbiotic. They mutually lead to one another, environmental justice leading to pollution prevention and pollution prevention leading to environmental justice.
For example, a community affirms its right to justice, its right to oppose a high-risk toxic, hazardous, or radioactive facility that poses a threat; the facility is stopped, justice is served, and pollution in the community is prevented.
Additionally, for example, government could prevent pollution escaping from toxic, hazardous, and radioactive industries by mandating and enforcing stringent statutes and environmental regulations that are applied equally with transparency and independent oversight in wealthy and politically-connected counties and states, in rural and urban communities, and regardless of color or economic class.
The outcome of such rigorous and equitable statutory and regulatory pollution prevention measures would be to achieve environmental justice, a rarity in a world where the politics of the day usually determine how we deal with dangerous substances that last hundreds to hundreds of thousands of years.
Justice on the Demise, Especially in North Carolina
Here in North Carolina, the politics of the day is as short-sighted and deep-pocketed as ever, and our state is in grave danger as our environmental and civil rights are being trampled by Governor Pat McCrory and legislators who have promoted and passed regulations and legislation in 2013 that
— take away voter rights and economic and medical help and insurance protection for the poor and underpaid;
— that protect the natural gas fracking industry from transparency and liability for its use of dangerous chemicals that threaten groundwater.
— that lure mega waste disposal industries with the attraction of weakened regulations and the promise of little to no accountability and oversight, thus making North Carolina a potential dumping grounds for the Eastern Seaboard.