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Blaming The Victim; The Role Of Decision-Makers In The Occurence of Enviornmental Injustice
International Journal of Public Administration (2002)
  • Jaap Vos
  • Alka Sapat
  • Khi Thai
Past research on environmental justice concerns has focused primarily on the siting of hazardous waste facilities. Less research has been done on other aspects of environmental policy in which concerns of racial or other injustices arise. This study shows that environmental injustice is not limited to the sitting of hazardous facilities or the occurrence of pollution, but occurs also at the policy formation and implementation stages in other areas such as solid waste management. To study this issue, this study focuses on the implementation of the Illinois Solid Waste Management Act of 1988, in two counties in north-eastern Illinois, Kankakee and Will. In neither of the two counties were minorities included in the planning process, and out of a total of 91 advisory committee members, minority interests were represented by only one black male. At the same time racial minorities made up about 15 percent of the total population in the two counties. The study shows that the main reason for this lack of representation is not a lack of environmental concern among blacks. Nor can it be explained by a lack of interest in participation in environmental decision-making among blacks. Rather, the study shows that the process is led by misconceptions among planners and decision-makers who generally believe that blacks are not interested in environmental issues and therefore not interested in participating in environmental decision-making. The conclusion of this study is that it is the belief held by local planners and decision-makers that there is a lack of interest in environmental issues among blacks, that produced a planning process in which the interest of minorities were not represented.
  • Environmental Justice,
  • Perceptions,
  • Attitudes
Publication Date
Citation Information
Jaap Vos, Alka Sapat and Khi Thai. "Blaming The Victim; The Role Of Decision-Makers In The Occurence of Enviornmental Injustice" International Journal of Public Administration Vol. 25 Iss. 2-3 (2002)
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