When the NAACP recently released a report on the disproportionate effects of coal-fired plants on minorities, Jacqueline Patterson led the efforts to spread its message that these facilities were “killing low-income communities and communities of color.”
Patterson is the Environmental and Climate Justice Director for the venerable civil rights organization — a job whose purpose is sometimes questioned by the NAACP’s own constituents. As Patterson puts it, “Some of the communities I work in were like, ‘Well, we’re dealing with double digit unemployment and people dying of AIDS, people being racially profiled, high murder rates. How is melting ice caps and polar bear extinction going to become a priority for us?’”
For more on this story, visit: Coal Pollution and the Fight For Environmental Justice by Diane Toomey: Yale Environment 360.