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New report suggests Blacks more exposed to climate change

Hazel Trice Edney news wire | 4/20/2018, midnight

“We need an administration that understands the impact of environmental injustice on communities of color,” McEachin says. “Our asthma rates from being in the inner cities are higher than the national population elsewhere. We tend to live in urban areas and because heat gets trapped in urban areas and pollutins get trapped in urban areas the effects of climate change and global warming are more acute in our communities. And without an administration that’s sensitive to those needs, we have a lot of problems.” The best way to deal with it is to “win some elections,” he said.

McEachin is not alone in his “sense of urgency.” Rev. Lennox Yearwood, founder/president of the Hip Hop Caucus, has launched a weekly radio show and podcast to “counter attacks on our environment and communities, and advance solutions to climate change”, according to a press release. The show, co-hosted by Mustafa Santiago Ali launched on March 13th on D.C.-based 89.3 FM WPFW, a Pacifica Station.

“From Flint, to Standing Rock, to Puerto Rico, our planet and communities are under attack from environmental injustices, deadly policy decisions, insufficient action on climate change, and an Administration that is moving us backwards,” said Rev. Lennox Yearwood Jr. in a statement. “All people must benefit from the fight for clean air, clean water, and a sustainable planet.”

Ali says the radio show will feature “stories from communities facing deadly impacts from pollution and climate change, and conversations with celebrities, artists, activists, youth leaders, Congressional Members, issue experts, and more, the show will break down barriers between issues within the movement for justice and a sustainable planet for all.”

The climate change issue has not specifically been a bread and butter issue as part of the traditional issues of concern to African-Americans. But it appears to be now rising swiftly to the top of the environmental and economic justice agendas.

Late last year, the U.S. Black Chambers (USBC) met with McEachin and other members of the Congressional Black Caucus for a roundtable discussion to address growing concerns about the impact that the repeal of the Clean Power Plan would have on Black-owned businesses and the Black community at-large.

“It’s crucial that Black business owners and community leaders amplify their concerns about the proposed repeal of the Clean Power Plan,” said Ron Busby, USBC president/CEO. “By moving to repeal the Clean Power Plan, EPA Administrator Scott Pruitt is helping big corporations put profits before the health of our communities.”

McEachin indicated that a key will not only be educating the Black community on the effects of climate change, but on the need for their vote to influence who makes the decisions in Congress and the White House.

“We’ve got the ability to undo some of this damage, but we’ve got to have majorities at least in the House, but also in the Senate to begin that reversal process,” he says. “This is going to take a minute. So people have to remain vigilant. People have to remain energized. What you saw in Alabama, what you saw in Virginia – what I believe you’ll see this year – has to continue at least through 2020 if we’re going to reclaim the ability to protect our environment and protect our communities of color.”

Hazel Trice Edney is president/CEO of Trie Edney Communications and editor-in-chief of Trice Edney Newswire.