Our "open science" research collaboration with Flint residents revealed high levels of lead, Legionella and damage to potable water infrastructure due to a failure to implement corrosion control treatment. Our work, by any measure, succeeded. But at the same time, this experience has forced us to confront broader questions.
The EPA, we are told, will unveil this week new regulations to remove sulfur from American gasoline blends. Rather than representing some radical move of aggressive government intervention, this action will only just bring the United States up to the existing standards of Europe, Japan and South Korea.
Attorney General Eric Holder said in a speech in 2011 that Martin Luther King Jr. "plant[ed] the seeds of the environmental justice movement" and that environmental justice is "a civil rights issue." In that spirit, let's look at some metrics on how equitable environmental risk is distributed in the U.S.