NASA Names 27 Asteroids After Black, Hispanic, and Native American Astronauts

NASA Names 27 Asteroids After Black, Hispanic, and Native American Astronauts

NASA has named 27 asteroids in the asteroid belt between Mars and Jupiter after Black, Hispanic, and Native American astronauts to recognize their contributions and inspire a new generation of potential space explorers. Among those honored include Stephanie Wilson, Joan Higginbotham, Ed Dwight Jr., José Hernández, and John Herrington.  

Why this Matters:  NASA, like many American industries, has struggled with diversity — only 18 Black astronauts have gone to space.

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Redlined Neighborhoods More Susceptible to Flooding

Redlined Neighborhoods More Susceptible to Flooding

Due to redlining practices used by banks before the civil rights movement, Blacks and other minorities were only able to receive loans for houses in neighborhoods in “less desirable” areas that had a higher risk of flooding.  A new study shows that these neighborhoods are now more even more susceptible to flooding due to climate change.  

Why this Matters:  This study shows how the socioeconomic effects of redlining and the damage wrought by climate change can compound on each other.

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Minority Communities Raise Their Voices Against Trump’s Environmental Rule Rollbacks

Minority Communities Raise Their Voices Against Trump’s Environmental Rule Rollbacks

The rallying cry “I Can’t Breathe” that has been heard and seen at protests across the country was invoked by environmental justice advocates on Tuesday in Congress because it also applies to the harmful impact of pollution being experienced by these communities, and it is especially acute in minority communities also seeing disproportionate impacts from the COVID-19 pandemic.

Why This Matters:  Under the guise of “helping” communities after the COVID crisis, the administration is making things even worse for so many Americans that are already struggling under the burden of discriminatory pollution and its cascading harms to their health and well-being.

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Flooding and Severe Storms Disproportionately Impact Black and Brown Communities

Flooding and Severe Storms Disproportionately Impact Black and Brown Communities

As the third tropical storm of the season, Cristobal, sits in the Gulf of Mexico picking up steam like a pinball aiming for the coast somewhere from Houston to New Orleans, a new analysis of federal flood insurance payouts shows that flooding in the U.S. disproportionately harms black neighborhoods

Why This Matters:  This is not new news – there have been studies pointing out this disparity for years.  Indeed, more than a year ago, the National Academies of Science (NAS) issued a report that said that “Severe storms ‘fall on the rich and poor alike,’ but low-income neighborhoods suffer more damage from urban flooding.”

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Remembering MLK: He Planted the Seeds of the Environmental Justice Movement

Remembering MLK: He Planted the Seeds of the Environmental Justice Movement

Today, as we look back at the life and legacy of Dr. King, we remember that although he tragically died before the environmental movement had begun, his call for justice and civil rights inspired other movements like our own.  Former Attorney General Eric Holder said in a speech honoring King at the Environmental Protection Agency in 2011, that “Dr. King, in addition to his many other achievements, helped to plant the seeds for what would become our nation’s now-thriving environmental justice movement. 

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