Conference Track Descriptions
The conference will feature several thematic tracks that frame presentations, panels, and workshops:
- Arts, Culture, and Politics
- Environmental Health Science and Research
- Zero Emission Technology
- Community Driven Development
- Community Organizing, Mobilizing, and Action Workshops
Arts, Culture, and Politics
The Arts, Culture and Politics conference track is designed to illustrate and share ideas, perspectives, approaches and skills using the arts (visual, music, spoken word, written word, dance etc.) to advance a justice agenda. Participants in these panels, presentations, and workshops will learn about how to integrate arts and culture with community organizing, social media, and political and policy campaigns.
Presentations/workshops in this track could have a number of experts from the variety of disciplines such as music, visual arts, dance and other arts areas. Presentations and workshops should answer the focused on the following: How do you most effectively use art and culture to promote a social justice agenda? Why is art effective in activating your base to take and sustain action? What are some barriers to successful efforts in your field? What is an example of a successful campaign that you used your areas of art expertise?
- Image, audio and video productions and editing
- Music and messaging
- Arts in action – banners and puppets for demonstrations, marches, and actions
- Street theater
- Poetry and spoken word
Environmental Health Science and Research
The Environmental Health Science and Research track is intended to highlight the latest science and research related to environmental health and justice concerns.This track will include sessions featuring the latest research findings and research approaches including community based participatory research methods and collaborative research.
Presentations and workshops could feature experts from diverse fields discussing the latest air pollution studies, health implications for communities, and best practices or lessons learned in order to address the following: What is your latest research on the health impacts of air pollution? How do you effectively disseminate your research findings? What is the latest research on the negative health impacts related to climate change? How do you form effective collaborations with community organizations and community members? What are the benefits of the collaborations?
- Latest findings on health impacts of air pollution
- Latest research finding on climate change
- Mapping tools
- Citizen science
- Air monitoring equipment
- Collaborations between universities and research institutions and community-based organizations, advocacy organizations, labor, community members, and others
Zero Emission and Air Pollution Control Technology
The Zero Emission and Air Pollution Control Technology track is intended to provide an overview of existing technology, the benefits and barriers to implementing the technologies in freight communities, and policies that can help advance the technology. Presentations, workshops, and talks will include sessions that present details about vehicle performance, range, life cycle, cost, and the differences in near-zero vs. zero outcomes. Participants in this track ] will learn how to integrate zero emissions technology into their local/regional/national advocacy work to improve air quality in freight communities.
Sessions may feature topic experts including scientists, policy makers, and zero emission technology experts and advocates. Suggested discussion questions include: What are these applications and what is the current state of zero-emission vehicle technology? What kinds of zero-emission technology are available today in freight and heavy-duty truck applications? How do we get more of these vehicles into the market and on the road? What are the opportunities and barriers to deploying zero emission technology? How do we expand the availability of zero-emission vehicles to applications where they have not been commercialized today?
- Available technologies and applicability to freight transport
- Funding opportunities
- Policies that incentivize and advance zero emission technology
- Pilot projects and technology demonstrations
This track explores the impacts of freight transport, goods movement systems, and related air pollution on workers and the workforce, and how labor unions, organizations, and coalitions are connecting to build power. Possible discussion questions include: What is the impact of the freight and supply chain on the health and safety of workers? What policies and programs are in place to protect workers health and safety as well as improve their wages and working conditions? What lessons can we learn from labor organizing and campaigns? What are the opportunities and challenges for building linkages, coalitions, and alliances between labor and other groups?
- Case studies of labor coalitions and campaigns
- Labor strategies to build power to win national policy
- Strategies for building alliances between labor, environment, health, and community organizations
Community Driven Development
This track will address and discuss issues of community planning and development, including land use, community plans, cleanup and redevelopment of contaminated sites, climate resilience, and adaptation. It will also examine efforts to democratize the planning and development process to ensure that development goals are grounded in community vision and voice. Presentations, panels, and workshops should address questions such as: How do communities create a seat at the planning table? What are the levels of plans and governmental agencies that projects go through? What are the examples of places where there have been projects that were created by the community? What are examples of general plans that include environmental health and safety?
- Brownfields to healthfields
- Climate adaptation
- Green Zones campaign
- Community driven planning and development: land use, specific plans, community or general plans
- Democratizing planning
- Clean Air Action Plan for port communities: how communities engage
This track aims to provide an overview of local, federal, and international policy and legal frameworks that apply to the negative impacts of freight transportation on the environment, health, labor/work, and community. Panels, workshops, and speakers will address questions such as: What legal rights do communities have in regard to goods movement projects? What has been the success of challenging port and freight projects in court? What is the state of national policies on goods movement in the Trump era? What are the current opportunities to get involved on the local, regional, state, national, and international policy level?
- Legal and policy tools
- Skills and strategies for reviewing projects under NEPA and/or state project review
- Campaigns to hold elected officials accountable to policy wins
- Panel with experts in law and policy
- Best practices and lessons learned from policy campaigns.
Community Organizing, Mobilizing, and Action Workshops
This track will feature many skill building workshops that will help organizations and campaigns to build power needed to win policy that addresses environmental health and justice. The workshops will include sessions focused on skills building and strategy focused on: include: How to develop impactful campaigns? How to keep members engaged over the long haul? How to sure that residents’ voices are heard by elected officials? What are the most pressing issues for action on a community level?
- Case studies and best practices of organizing, campaigns, and coalition building
- Storytelling for powerful organizing
- How to use media
- Youth organizing