EPA's Region 6 Office
Serving: Arkansas, Louisiana, New Mexico, Oklahoma, Texas, and 66 Tribal Nations
The guiding principle of the Office of Environmental Justice is that everyone, regardless of race or income, is entitled to share equally in the benefits of environmental protection.
The goal of our Environmental Justice Team is to ensure that all people are protected from disproportionate impacts of environmental hazards. Environmental Justice is about real people facing real problems and designing practical solutions to address challenging environmental issues. The environmental justice movement advocates programs that promote environmental protection within the context of sustainable development.
Considering Environmental Justice in Permitting
As part of ongoing work under Plan EJ 2014 to integrate environmental justice into EPA programs, in May 2013, the EPA issued new documents to describe steps in the permitting process that the Agency is taking to consider environmental justice and enhance opportunities for community involvement. Region 6 is participating in the EJ in Permitting Initiative and has developed a Regional Implementation Plan that describes the types of permits that will be involved.
Port Arthur Showcase Community Profile
The Westside Community in Port Arthur, Texas, was one of 10 locations selected for EPA’s national Environmental Justice Showcase Communities project in November 2009. As part of the two-year project, EPA Region 6 developed an environmental profile to help residents understand important environmental factors in their area. The environmental profile provides a snapshot of air, water, and land conditions affecting public health in the Westside Community.
Grant Resource Guide
EPA Region 6 has created a guide to assist community leaders, non-profits and tribes with identifying EPA resources that can support community efforts to protect and renew the environment and create a healthier and more sustainable future for their citizens. This guide can also be used by states, local governments and businesses to reach out to their communities and share information about EPA resources.
More Resources for EJ Communities
The Community-Based Federal Environmental Justice Resource Guide identifies federal programs, projects and other efforts that can help communities with technical or financial assistance. The Environmental Justice Federal Interagency Directory provides the public with contact information to better engage agencies on EJ/community-based matters.
EJView Mapping Tool Now Available
EPA’s mapping tool, EJView, is now publicly available. EJView is designed to allow users to choose and map demographic, environmental, and health data. EJView is an upgrade to the Environmental Justice Geographic Assessment Tool (EJGAT). It includes the same functionality as EJGAT, but is now faster and easier to use.
EPA Provides Spanish and Chinese Language Sites
EPA has launched a new consolidated Chinese-language Web site as part of its ongoing effort to provide environmental information in English, Spanish and Chinese. The new site compiles EPA Chinese-language materials on a wide variety of issues from lead poisoning prevention, energy efficiency, and clean water to proper management of pesticides. The site also serves as a valuable tool in delivering important health and environmental information to the Chinese-speaking community, both here in the U.S. and worldwide, to help protect local communities as well as the global environment. Chinese is the third most widely-spoken language in the U.S., after English and Spanish.
Supplemental Environmental Projects
SEPs are environmentally beneficial projects that a violator voluntarily agrees to undertake during settlement of an enforcement action. The purpose of a SEP is to secure significant environmental or public health protection improvements beyond those achieved by bringing the violator into compliance.