All environmental issues involve social issues. We acknowledge the interconnectedness of social and biophysical factors and recognize that order to achieve environmental justice, it is necessary to incorporate social justice ideals, by promoting respectful forms of collaboration, giving voice to those who have been silenced, and decolonizing our actions.

Often, people confuse environmentalism with environmental justice. environmentalism refers, broadly, to the protection of wildlife and preservation of nature. Environmental justice serves as a lens through which social justice principles can be incorporated into the realm of fair sustainability. On the other hand, climate justice promotes an urgent action needed to prevent climate change must be based on community-led solutions around the world. It is about working at the intersection of environmental degradation due to climate change and social justice.

Climate change amplifies socioeconomic disparities, being people of color the most vulnerable. In fact, it has been shown that climate change has a direct impact, not only on ecosystems, but also on human health. Due to weather variability, there is increased exposure to illnesses and injuries due to poor air quality, as well as to limited water availability, severe heat waves, drought, wildfires, flooding, and decrease of food sources. Despite the advancement in the area, increasing social inequalities, exacerbated by climate change, require more collaborative and inclusive approaches that incorporate environmental justice through interdisciplinary frameworks to truly respond to the needs of a growing and diversified population.

More resources about climate justice and sustainability

Dean's Office Contacts: