Environmental Justice

By accepting responsibility, we take effective steps toward our goal: an inclusive human society on a habitable planet, a society that works for all humans and for all nonhumans. By accepting responsibility, we move closer to creating a world that works for all.

Sharif Abdullah Keynote Speaker at the 2016 Just Sustainability Conference, Seattle University

We define environmental justice (EJ) as the empowerment of people to advocate for the health of natural and built environments and for the equitable distribution of environmental benefits and burdens throughout all communities.   

The “environment” is not some distant place we seek to protect, but incorporates the places where we live, work, play, pray and learn. Environmental justice advocates link social and environmental concerns, thereby seeking “to challenge the abuse of power which results in poor people having to suffer the effects of environmental damage caused by the greed of others,” as stated by the South African Environmental Justice Networking Forum. 

Research We Support:

  • Water and Energy Projects
    • Tiny Homes research project: SU students work to explore how to determine the most efficient and effective insulation and ventilation systems to be used in the conversion of shipping crates into tiny homes.
    • EnviroWorks: SU students compare the effectiveness of energy efficient strategies used at two low income senior housing projects located in Salishan, WA.
    • Clean water projects: SU has projects and partners in Nepal, Thailand, Haiti, Nicaragua, and in Seattle's own Capitol Hill!
    • Kilowatt for Humanity helps to bring power to rural villages around the world through the instillation of microgrids that power energy kiosks using solar panels.
    • Nicamigos: This group of SU alumni and friends are involved in numerous projects in Nicaragua, including a coffee wastewater treatment facilities, sustainable water purification systems, and more.
  • Environmental Education
    • WA Middle School: SU students collaborate with Washington Middle School students to build self-sustaining aquaponics gardens.

Local Organizations

  • Puget Sound Sage In the video below, Dimitri Groce discusses the ways in which climate change will disproportionately impact neighborhoods in Seattle and how people of color will lead the environmental justice movement. Puget Sound Sage brings together labor, faith, and community to build an economy based on shared prosperity.

CEJS Facebook