EPA Budget Cuts Will Especially Harm Low-Income Communities of Color

The Trump administration's proposed $2 billion EPA budget cuts will be felt particularly hard in low-income communities of color. The proposed budget cuts would troublingly eliminate the agency's environmental justice office, which had unveiled a four-year environmental justice agenda before the election that aims to "further integrate environmental justice considerations in all of the Agency’s program." Other proposed cuts would impact Native communities and $13 million reduction in funding for compliance monitoring of drinking water, which coincides with the still-ongoing Flint water crisis. "The targeting of budget cuts to our nation's most environmentally vulnerable and overburdened communities is a direct attack on environmental justice and the very heart of the USEPA's core mission. These cuts will impact the health and well being of millions of people in low income, communities of color and indigenous communities that have a right to a clean environment." says Ana Baptista, Associate Director of the Tishman Environment and Design Center.These budget cuts will only further marginalize both low income communities and communities of color, who have been historically negatively impacted by dangerous pollutants and environmental contamination. The Tishman Environment and Design Center is committed to being an academic ally to the environmental justice movement and we strongly believe that everyone has the right to thrive in a democratic, equitable and sustainable society. Our faculty research is dedicated to advancing the environmental justice movement through an interdisciplinary academic lens. The Tishman Center will continue its commitment to focus on the potential for progress on the challenges we face as a nation. The strengths at The New School can be leveraged to work in solidarity with communities to create a more just and sustainable future.