February 4, 2016

PLF's Tony Francois to testify on environmental justice before US Commission on Civil Rights

By Anthony L. Francois Senior Attorney

On Friday, February 5, I will be testifying before the United States Commission on Civil Rights in Washington D.C., on the subject of environmental justice. Environmental justice is a concept that applies disparate racial impact theory to questions like siting, permitting, enforcement, and clean up of power plants, refineries, and similar facilities. Under the concept of environmental justice, local governments and environmental agencies would base these types of decisions on the race of those who live in the vicinity of the facility and who may be affected by pollution from the facilities.

The essential problem with this approach is that it requires government officials to make decisions about siting and regulating potentially polluting facilities based explicitly on race, which violates the Constitution. You can preview my testimony here., and stay tuned for updates.

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