Feds Issue First-Ever Technical Guidance For Environmental Justice

On June 7th, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (“EPA”) issued a technical guidance document Tuesday covering how to incorporate environmental justice principles when evaluating development projects. (Press Release HERE.)

According to the EPA, the Technical Guidance for Assessing Environmental Justice in Regulatory Actions outlines approaches and methods to evaluate potential environmental justice “concerns” for agencies approving development projects. The Technical Guidance cements and expands an Executive Order on the same topic signed by Bill Clinton in 1994 (Executive Order 12898), and controversially introduces race, color, national origin, and income levels into to the development process and inserts these same “concerns” when agencies consider the implementation and, perhaps most worrisome, the enforcement of environmental laws, regulations and policies.

The Technical Guidance was developed by a team of economists, risk assessors and other analysts at the EPA’s Office of Policy, Office of Environmental Justice, and Office of Research and Development. Its findings and demands are supposedly based on currently available, scientifically-appropriate risk assessment and regulatory analysis methods.