Washington, DC (September 1, 2008)- The Environmental Justice Renewal Act (S. 2549) requires the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) Administrator to establish an Interagency Working Group on Environmental Justice to provide guidance to Federal agencies on the development of criteria for identifying disproportionately high and adverse human health or environmental effects on minority populations and low-income populations.
July 31, 2008- Introduced and referred to the Committee on Environment and Public Works
The Environmental Justice Renewal Act defines environmental justice as the fair treatment and meaningful involvement of all individuals regardless or race, color, national origin, educational level, or income in the process of developing environmental laws and regulations. Defines environmental justice community as a community with a significant representation of racial, ethnic, or low-income populations vulnerable to environmental or human health risks.
The Act also directs the EPA Administrator to establish the Interagency Working Group on Environmental Justice to provide guidance to federal agencies in identifying disproportionately high and adverse human health or environmental effects on minority and low-income populations and to assist such agencies in developing environmental justice strategies. The Working Group would be required to develop and promulgate a coordinated interagency federal environmental justice strategy.
New departments, position, and programs created by this bill include:
* Environmental Justice Ombudsman to monitor complaints relating to environmental justice programs
* Training in environmental justice to EPA employees
* Grant programs to address local environmental justice concerns
* Basic training program to assist residents of environmental justice communities in identifying human health and environmental risks
* National Environmental Justice Advisory Council to provide independent advice and recommendations to the Administrator on environmental justice issues
* Environmental Justice Clearinghouse to provide information on EPA activities relating to environmental justice
* Requires the Comptroller General to report to Congress on the effectiveness of this Act
Environmental Justice Renewal Act (S. 2549)
Environmental Justice Act of 2007 (S. 642)
21st Century Green High-Performing Public School Facilities Act (H.R. 3021)