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Environmental Justice Activity Collection

These activities have been submitted by faculty from a range of disciplines. The activities use a wide array of pedagogic approaches to address environmental justice.


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Using Sensory Data to Map Enviromental Experiences
Lisa Phillips, Illinois State University

Hazardous Waste and Toxics: Real Data for Real Places
Richard Kujawa, Saint Michaels College
A hands-on lab to explore Superfund, Toxics Release Inventory and TOXMAP online data to examine geographies of hazardous waste, toxic releases into the environment and their connections with socio-economic, environmental and health impacts. The lab includes directed and self-directed components.

Addressing energy-related environmental injustice
Karen Berger, University of Rochester
Student teams will identify a locally relevant example of energy-related environmental injustice and propose solutions for a potential decision-maker within the time frame of a single lecture period.

Mapping Environmental Justice: The Geography of Population and Pollution
Christopher Cusack, Keene State College
Hands-on computer mapping activity analyzing location of toxic release facilities and diversity of population.

Introducing students to a critical realist approach to environmental justice in the U.S.
Anna Versluis, Gustavus Adolphus College
This activity describes how students in a combined geography and environmental studies undergraduate course are introduced to the concept of environmental justice from a critical realist perspective. Students use the E.P.A.'s environmental justice mapping tool, EJView, and a number of scholarly texts to propose their own research on a U.S. environmental justice case study.

Using Differing Substrates to Track Their Effectiveness in Neutralizing Acid Deposition
Nathan Cahoone, Trinidad State Junior College
The overall point of this assignment is to recognize what type of natural and human made structures can protect us from the affects of acid rain.

Energy Audit and Retrofit
Barbara Whitten, Colorado College

Using Poetry to Explore the Rhetoric of Environmental Justice
Amanda Hagood, Hendrix College
How can literary work give us deeper insight into the concept of environmental justice? This activity explores the crossroads of political writing and poetry, and challenges students to put environmental justice principles into their own words.

Using Media to Document Public Attitudes on Waste
Sya Kedzior, Towson University
Students work in small groups to record interviews capturing public attitudes on various types of waste. Students then edit shorter videos into a larger film that incorporates student analysis and synthetic commentary on waste in our society.

Mapping your Neighborhood
Abu Badruddin, Cayuga County Community College
Application of GIS in identifying environmental justice in your neighborhood.

Applying Environmental Justice ConceptsContextualized Essay Options
Paul Jeffries, Ripon College
This is a writing assignment on the topic of environmental justice for a philosophy-oriented "Philosophy and the Environment" course. It provides somewhat realist scenarios for students to demonstrate their understanding of several theories and practices emerging from environmental ethical issues including race, class, gender, indigenous peoples, and international law and economics.

Empowering People to Deal with the Effects of Climate Change
DIANE BERES, Ripon College
This classroom activity involves viewing and discussing very short videos demonstrating the effects of climate change on the lives of people in three different countries.

Earthquake Case Studies: Scientific Details and Societal Impacts
Matthew Nyman, Oregon State University
Learning outcomes for this activity include learning earthquake basics. The larger context of the inequity of earthquake impacts provides a social/environmental justice lens that encourages students to examine earthquake hazards with a broader perspective.

Exploring the environmental injustice of climate change: An international debate teaching exercise
April Baptiste, Colgate University
Climate change and environmental justice class activity. Designed for students to understand the justice issues surrounding climate change on a global and domestic level.

Local Garbage in a Global Controversy
Angie Gumm, Friends University
This is a role-playing activity about the dioxin debate between Dr. Barry Commoner and Dr. Robert Brown about the resource recovery plant in Ames, Iowa, and the Nunavut Inuit. It addresses issues of environmental justice, risk assessment, and ideology in relation to the management of solid waste.

Cyber-Mediated Ethnography: The Next Best Thing to Being There
Deborah Jackson, Earlham College
In this activity, students undertake a "cyber-mediated ethnography" project. Working in small groups, students use internet resources connected to the location they are studying, and involving variously positioned stakeholders. The product is a group report and presentation and, if resources allow, a website sharing their findings.

Environmental Justice Activity
Herb Wang, University of Wisconsin-Madison

Copper Production in the High Peruvian Andes: Geology, Economics and Politics
James Myers, University of Wyoming
This is a multi-component case study on copper and Peru. It attemps to look at a specific mineral resource through multiple lenses, e.g. geology, economics, regulation and political process.

Reading the IPCC 4th Assessment Report for Human Impacts
Julie Maxson, Metropolitan State University
Working in groups, students investigate sections the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) Fourth Assessment Report. Each group focuses on a particular continent or region, evaluating both the Physical Science Basis, and the Impacts, Adaptation, and Vulnerability sections of the report.

Mock Public Comments on the Draft EIS for West Virginia's King Coal Highway
Lauren Waterworth, Appalachian State University
Students will review a Draft Environmental Impact Statement and respond in the form of public comments at a mock public hearing.



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