Environmental Justice

What is Environmental Justice?

Environmental justice is the right of all people and communities to equal environmental protection under the law and equal involvement in environmental decision-making processes. It is the right to "live, work, and play in communities that are safe, healthy, and free of life-threatening conditions."

Whether by conscious design or institutional neglect, commercial, industrial, and governmental policies or actions have resulted in the disproportionate exposure of poor communities and people of color to environmental hazards and environmental health burdens. The environmental justice movement seeks to promote economic alternatives that contribute to the development of environmentally safe livelihoods for all and address systemic environmental injustices. 

Delegates to the First National People of Color Environmental Leadership Summit held in 1991 drafted and adopted The Principles of Environmental Justice, which have served as a defining document for the environmental justice movement since.

Environmental Justice Toolkit*

SeattleU and Environmental Justice

Your Next Steps: Take Action*

Educating oneself about environmental justice is a first step to address injustice in our communities. While education is important, it's crucial to translate what we learn into tangible actions. Explore here how you can get involved, organize, and take action on environmental justice and sustainability. See more ideas for WHAT YOU CAN DO.


The resources on this page were compiled by CEJS as examples of groups and initiatives working toward environmental justice. Seattle University is not affiliated with any of the groups and expressly disclaims all responsibility for any content provided and all liability that may arise out of participation in any organization, program, or activity.