Town Square: Climate Injustice

Climate change often hits communities of color and low-income neighborhoods the hardest. Toxic facilities are too often placed in minority neighborhoods. These sobering findings come from the NAACP, and there’s a common term for them: environmental injustice.

Jacqui Patterson, director of the NAACP Environmental and Climate Justice Program, will discuss this controversial issue at the Academy of Natural Sciences of Drexel University’s next Town Square at 6:30 p.m., Wednesday, Dec. 14, in the museum’s auditorium.

Patterson’s talk is free, and she will answer questions from the audience afterward. Registration is requested; to register, visit

Jacqui Patterson is director of the NAACP Environmental and Climate Justice Program.

Patterson’s program addresses environmental issues—such as coal-fired power plants, droughts and flooding—in terms of how they affect people, especially residents of low-income urban neighborhoods including Philadelphia. Working with community leaders, the program advocates for the reduction of harmful emissions, greater energy efficiency and clean energy, and stronger community resilience.

“My approach is to talk about how environmental issues are linked to economic justice, political power, criminal justice, housing issues, gender justice, and immigration rights,” Patterson said.  “Approaches to exposure to toxins must significantly transcend the notion of tougher pollution controls and regulations and address the root causes of pollution, disproportionate exposures and the myriad social ills that afflict the same types of communities across the country.”

Patterson will describe how community leaders she’s met across the country are dealing with these issues.

This event is part of the Academy’s Town Square series of free evening programs designed to engage and provide relevant educational content to the public on environmental issues. Town Square is made possible by Warren Environmental Counsel.

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