Environmental Justice (EJ) is a topic that many have heard about but what does it mean for a regulated entity? Regulatory agencies are increasingly requiring sources to address EJ in permitting activities. Proactive planning and communication are the keys to navigating newly implemented and proposed EJ requirements. But beware, in many states and localities, EJ requirements are a moving target.
It is key for a permit applicant to have early and frequent communication with the regulatory authority responsible for reviewing permit applications and issuing your permit regarding what their current requirements are for addressing EJ. In addition, the applicant must engage community representatives and stakeholders that have a vested interest in understanding the impacts the facility and operations may have on the community. Pollution prevention measures, monitoring plans, communication techniques and any other tools such as EJSCREEN (a USEPA screening and mapping tool) and air dispersion modeling should be considerations in the development of your project, and these should be conveyed to and discussed with both the regulatory authority and the community through open communications.
Aegis Environmental has successfully assisted clients in working through EJ issues and we stand ready to assist you. For more information, please contact Ginger Ellis at firstname.lastname@example.org or Sandra Morse at email@example.com, or call us at 888-675-1220.