HEI is launching a new Environmental Justice (EJ) Program that builds on and expands HEI’s research funding model to better meet the needs of historically marginalized communities while addressing environmental inequities.
The EJ program will create funding mechanisms to support research focused on the needs of communities disproportionately affected by environmental pollution, as well as convene multiple sectors to collaborate, share data, and identify solutions to advance EJ. The EJ program is a cross-cutting program and will bring a stronger focus of EJ issues to HEI’s other ongoing work.
HEI has established an Advisory Council and an Oversight Panel to guide and oversee the program. Council and Panel members all have expertise in environmental justice, environmental health, community engagement, and air pollution monitoring or modeling, among other areas of expertise.
Last fall, HEI held two meetings to begin engaging with communities and other stakeholders seeking solutions for those impacted by issues of environmental justice.
The first meeting, a two-day workshop in October 2022 in Atlanta, brought together an array of stakeholders to facilitate discussions, identify best paths forward for EJ research, and inform HEI’s new cross-cutting program to address environmental inequities. Participants attended from across the United States and represented academic institutions, community organizations, nonprofit organizations, government institutions, and HEI sponsors.
The second event occurred in December 2022, when HEI President Dan Greenbaum joined White House cabinet officials at a forum on “Evidence of Inequities: Leveraging Air Pollution Research Advancements for Environment Health Policy Decisions.” This virtual event highlighted the work of researchers who are actively applying air quality science and technology data and tools to questions of EJ policy.