Massachusetts

Environmental Justice Legislation

Mothers Out Front supports Environmental Justice (EJ) as a civil rights principle: all people have a right to be protected from environmental pollution and to live in a clean and healthful environment, regardless of race, national origin, or income. In a time of severe climate change, it also means equal protection against the adverse consequences of severe weather, extreme temperatures, and flooding.

Our priority bills, along with our allies in Mass Power Forward, are:

  • S.464/H.761 - Sen. Eldridge, Rep. DuBois & Rep. Miranda (“The Environmental Justice Act”) 
  • S.453/H.826 - Sen. DiDomenico and Rep. Madaro (An Amendment to the Massachusetts Environmental Policy Act, MEPA) 

Why Put Environmental Justice into Massachusetts General Law?

Expressing the principle of environmental justice in law has important practical consequences for protecting people across the state because:
● Low-income communities and communities of color are more likely to be in the shadows of multiple sources of pollution including dirty power plants, incinerators and landfills, roads with high auto & diesel emissions, and high obstacles preparing for and recovering from climate-change related disasters.
● Massachusetts regulatory agencies such as the Dept. of Environmental Protection, the Dept. of Public Utilities, and the Dept. of Transportation need a clear legislative mandate to prioritize the protection of low-income communities and communities of color, instead of continuing to let pollution sources accumulate in already-overburdened communities and neglecting those communities when preparing for and recovering from climate change.

For a two-page handout on these bills, click here.


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