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Abstract

An investigative journalist describes how grassroots environmental struggles in three different communities—in Oklahoma, Florida, and Louisiana—contain similarities that reveal larger patterns about the long path communities must follow to achieve environmental justice. Residents living near industry fence lines cannot depend on regulators or industry to protect them, the author concludes, but must gather their own evidence of pollution’s effects. Environmental justice—in the form of reduced pollution or relocation from dangerous plants—is possible. But, as the case studies show, such resolution is achieved only after years of struggle and persistence.

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