Environmental Justice, Toxic Tours, and GreenFaith
This chapter shows how people of faith are reclaiming a ministry of justice with a focus on the environment. Faith communities helped to define environmental justice as a national movement in the United States. The stories in this chapter highlight the work of the religious environmental organization GreenFaith in New Jersey and its partnerships with the West Harlem Environmental Action Coalition (WE ACT) and congregations such as St. Mary’s Episcopal Church in Harlem. One outreach strategy described in this chapter includes the toxic tours organized by GreenFaith, which aim to increase awareness among people of faith of the inequitable distribution of pollutants in communities. The lessons learned in this chapter include the impact of outreach strategies like toxic tours, the power of prayer and ritual, the potential of partnerships, the position of the church as a first responder to environmental injustice, and the importance of justice as a religious framework.
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