White House unveils environmental justice screening tool – with one glaring omission

White House unveils environmental justice screening tool – with one glaring omission

The White House has rolled out a new screening tool to help identify communities disparately impacted by environmental injustice, leaving out one critical factor.

Washington D.C.- the White House Friday rolled out a new screening tool to help identify communities disparately affected by environmental injustice, but activists and advocates criticize the omission of a very critical factor.

White House Environmental Quality Council Chair Brenda Mallory said the new screening tool will help direct federal resources to marginalized communities. © IMAGO / ZUMA Wire

The administration’s new tool will be used to help decide how federal funds are allocated to communities impacted by environmental risks.

Brenda Mallory, chair of the White House Council on Environmental Quality, said the tool would help the government direct resources to communities.”who have been left out and left behind for far too long,” according to the Associated press.

It includes indices such as air pollution, health outcomes and economic status – but excludes race, although many experts point to race as the biggest determinant of environmental injustice.

NYC Mayor to Invest Millions in Youth Summer Jobs Program
The politicians
NYC Mayor to Invest Millions in Youth Summer Jobs Program

The omission has drawn criticism from racial and environmental justice advocates.

“It’s a major disappointment and it’s a major flaw in trying to identify the communities that have been hardest hit by pollution,” Robert Bullard, a member of the White House Environmental Justice Advisory Council, told Reuters. ‘Associated Press.

Administration officials said the race exclusion was a way to reduce the number of legal challenges they could face.