Environmental Justice Task Force

Through Princeton Citizen Scientists (PCS) and in collaboration with the Princeton Office of Sustainability, I have started a graduate environmental justice task force. A group of around 10 Princeton students and I have been working hard to try to answer questions about environmentally sustainable and just food procurement.

From a PCS ListServ communication: “Environmental justice is the notion that the burdens of pollution and production are shared unequally across communities globally.  This leads to systemic inequality and injustice to overburdened communities, who are often socioeconomically disadvantaged.”

Studying environmental justice poses a bit of a challenge to a STEM-oriented student: whereas sustainability can easily be quantified through metrics like carbon emissions or energy usage, environmental justice is a bit more subjective; it’s hard to put a specific number to measurements of environmental justice. Because of this, it can be difficult to perform an objective study on the all-around ethics of a farm or food production company. It has been enlightening to speak with peers from other departments on the subject: this project is a healthy exercise in social justice and argument construction.

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