Author Julie Sze will discuss her new book that touches on how racial minority and low-income communities often suffer disporoportionate effects of urban environmental problems. Environmental justice advocates argue that these communities are on the front lines of environmental and helth risks. In Noxious New York, Sze analyzes the culture, politics, and history of environmental justice activism in New York City within the larger context of privatization, deregulation, and globalization. She tracks urban planning and environmental health activism in four gritty New York neighborhoods: Brooklyn’s Sunset Park and Williamsburg sections, West Harlem, and the South Bronx. In these communities, activism flourished in the 1980s and 1990s in response to economic decay and a concentration of noxious incinerators, solid waste transfer stations, and power plants. Sze describes the emergence of local campaigns organized around issues of asthma, garbage, and energy systems, and how, in each neighborhood, activists framed their arguements in the vocabulary of environmental justice.
Julie Sze is Assistant Professor of American Studies and Director of the Environmental Justice Project at the John Muir Institute for the Environment, University of California, Davis.
With support by UPROSE