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Environmental Justice on Earth Day and Beyond

Tuesday, April 22nd, 2008

On Earth Day many people are looking to environmental organizations to help them understand how they can reduce their consumption, stop global warming, and other efforts to improve the health of our Earth. These are important issues to tackle, but I find it even more exciting to discover organizations that are making additional strides to address environmental and social justice at the same time.

The Oakland Food Connection, is an environmental justice organization in the Bay Area that brings together practical gardening, food security and nutrition to urban schools. One of their projects includes creating a rooftop vegetable garden at a local elementary school. I found out about this project on RyanIsHungry.com, where Ryanne explains, “These vegetables will serve as more than just a healthy meal, they’ll help educate kids and their parents about the possibilities that exist beyond processed, packaged foods and the often limited variety of produce sold in stores.” It’s my hope that they will also be turned on to issues around industrial agriculture and its negative consequences that spans economic, labor, and the environmental issues. Check out the video to hear from the director of the Oakland Food Connection and learn more.

Other environmental justice organizations that focus on green jobs are also receiving more attention as the climate justice movement is growing. In the extra from the Everything’s Cool Activist DVD, Green Job Revolution , Van Jones who is the Founder and President of Green for All explains that there is only one solution to the ecological and the economic crisis: we need a green economy strong enough to lift people out of poverty. Green for All is at the forefront of the national movement to building an inclusive green economy.

Check out the Green Job Revolution video below to hear more of what Van Jones has to say and see what the Chicago-based organization Growing Home is doing to provide job training and create employment opportunities for homeless and low-income people in Chicago within the context of a non-profit organic agriculture business.

Solutions are rooted in every city and town in America. Today and all year long – since Earth Day is everyday – let’s support and celebrate efforts for environmental justice.

 

 
 
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