Just sustainability in practice


Julian Agyeman's research on urban environmental planning is influential in developing the idea of 'Just Sustainability' in both local environmental studies and the environmental justice movement (the focus of this reading). This reading outlines a 'Just Sustainability Index' for assessing the commitment to social and environmental responsibility by environmental organizations. In addition, it provides concrete illustrations of how local organizations find solutions to both social and environmental injustice. A founder and chair of the first environmental justice organization in the UK, the Black Environment Network, as well as an environmental consultant for sustainability projects for local governments, Agyeman explores the links between practical environmental policies and environmental theory that takes account of an increasingly urbanized world.

ยง First, I develop a Just Sustainability Index; through which I assess the commitment of a range of national environmental and sustainability organizations to the JSP [Just Sustainability Paradigm] to provide [...] a rule of thumb as to where well-known national organizations stand in relation to justice and equity issues. I then present three representative programs or projects in each of five sustainability issue categories (land-use planning, solid waste, toxic chemical use, residential energy use, and transportation) that are demonstrating just sustainability in practice in U.S. cities.

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