Steps Coalition Hosts Environmental Justice Tour of Gulfport & Pascagoula

Last week, the Steps Coalition, a grass roots social justice organization in Biloxi, Mississippi and member of the Moving Forward Network, hosted two bus tours of Environmental Justice communities on the Mississippi Gulf Coast.  The tours, held on the last day of the Gulfport meeting of the EPA National Environmental Justice Advisory Council (NEJAC), demonstrated the extent to which minority communities bear the brunt of air and water pollution and health effects from freight transportation, petrochemical plants, and other polluting activities.

Tour guides included Howard Page and Jennifer Crosslin, Steps Coalition community organizers, and Derrick Evans, director of Turkey Creek Community Initiatives.

Tour participants included community residents and NEJAC and Moving Forward Network members from across the country.The first tour took us to the site of the planned expansion of the Port of Gulfport and a proposed 435 acre wetland fill for an intermodal facility and truck route that threatens the Turkey Creek neighborhood and other communities. For more information on Turkey Creek and its environmental justice challenges, check out the New Republic article, After the Deluge – Building climate justice from the wreckage of Hurricane Katrina.

The second tour was of a large industrial area in Pascagoula and a fenceline community struggling with severe air pollution.  To learn more about the Cherokee Subdivision and the environmental injustice imposed on them, read Residents Near Bayou Casotte Industrial Complex in Pascagoula Want to Know What They’re Breathing and  Let’s Help Pascagoula Citizens Fight For Clean Air.

The tours were followed by an evening together at a local restaurant. It was a pleasure to get to know each other better!

Group Picture Gulfport restaurant cropped

Recent Posts

Success stories show why weakening the National Environmental Policy Act would harm America

Share Tweet Share +1 RedditThe National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) requires that government agencies understand the environmental, health, and other impacts of their actions before they spend our tax dollars, and that the American public be involved and informed. NEPA is designed to ensure that agencies analyze risks and alternatives, and make decisions based on the facts. NEPA […]

Read More

West Oakland Environmental Indicators Project research reveals dangerous pollution hotspots

Share Tweet Share +1 RedditAs the Moving Forward Network members that do air pollution monitoring know from on-the-ground experience, EPA regulatory air monitors may show an area to have low levels of particulate matter from diesel exhaust and other air pollution when in fact, nearby hot spots can have high and dangerous levls of air […]

Read More

You Can Help Clean up Ports and Rail Yards

Sign our petition to the EPA