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Environmental Justice Element

The City is developing its first Environmental Justice Element, which will reflect the City’s efforts to promote equal access to resources and to create a healthy, safe, and inclusive community for all to enjoy. Through the process of creating the Element, the City will evaluate its current policies and create new ones to minimize pollution and its effects on all neighborhoods, with an emphasis on those in disadvantaged communities. This effort will be closely tied to ongoing updates to other General Plan Elements, including the Land Use, Circulation, and Safety Elements as well as other citywide plans like the Climate Action and Adaptation Plan, Pedestrian Plan, and Bicycle Transportation Plan.

We want to hear from you!

Take the Environmental Justice survey and let the City know your thoughts on environmental justice in your community.

What is Environmental Justice?

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency defines environmental justice as, “The fair treatment and meaningful involvement of all people regardless of race, color, national origin, or income, with respect to the development, implementation, and enforcement of environmental laws, regulations, and policies.”

Environmental justice is about making sure everyone, no matter what they look like or how much money they have, has equal access to clean air, water, land, and other resources. It’s about creating and enforcing rules so that no one is unfairly harmed by pollution or other environmental problems.

Why is the City Creating an Environmental Justice Element?
The state of California now requires cities with disadvantaged communities to incorporate environmental justice into their general plan. A disadvantaged community is a part of a neighborhood that is unfairly affected by pollution and other dangers, which can cause health problems, exposure to harmful substances, or damage to the environment. These areas deserve special attention to address issues of environmental justice.

The Environmental Justice Element will address the following topics:

  • Pollution Exposure & Air Quality

  • Public Facility Access

  • Healthy Food Access

  • Safe and Sanitary Homes

  • Physical Activity Access

  • Community Engagement

  • Improvements and Programs

  • Unique Health Risks

Environmental Justice Element Timeline

  • Public outreach and background research: Spring and Summer 2024

  • Public draft: Late 2024/early 2025

  • Final draft for City Council Adoption: Anticipated 2025

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