Vermont has a reputation for strong environmental regulations. But it’s one of the last states in New England to have an environmental justice policy on the books, even though the EPA has been pushing for it to happen since 2016. Lawmakers are weighing a bill this week that would create one.
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The work connecting poverty relief to environmental justice is undeveloped and nearly nonexistent. We need a new paradigm in our traditional anti-poverty and social service thinking to include a focus on the environment, and environmental organizations need to include people living in poverty as they develop their thinking and practice.