Center for Environmental Justice and Sustainability
What is Environmental Justice?
Environmental justice is 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. As the global environmental and political climate continues to change, it is vital that new policies and laws ensure the protection of everyone, particularly those who are most likely to be negatively impacted by such changes.
Seattle University and Environmental Justice
Seattle University strives to engage its community to make conscious, responsible and ethical decisions, and to promote environmental justice through:
Center for Indian Law and Policy: The SU Law School's Center for Indian Law and Policy provides services, information, and education to Indian people, tribal leaders, students, and attorneys.
Center for Global Justice: The Center for Global Justice fosters multidisciplinary research, education, and advocacy about global legal issues, including human rights, development, and the environment.
John August Swanson creates masterful pieces illustrating climate change and environmental justice. His work can be found around campus!
Seattle University student Mandy Rusch communicates the issues of homelessness through art. Her work has been featured by The Bill and Melinda Gates foundation here.
Andrew Morrison's work can be seen in Cherry Street Market. His murals consist of Chief Sealth, Princess Angelina, Vi Hilbert, Billy Frank Jr., and contemporary Native American people and activists.
Pope Francis expressed in his encyclical Laudato Si’ (issues in May 2015) the uncomfortable truths regarding the lack of environmental justice in the world, and challenged humankind to take responsibility for the planet and particularly to be mindful of those who are suffering most from the ecological crisis now before us. Read more.
Environmental Justice and Policymaking
Executive Order 12898- Federal Actions To Address Environmental Justice in Minority Populations and Low-Income Populations