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When looking at the distribution of environmental hazards it becomes clear that individuals who are bearing a greater share of hazards are communities of minorities. In fact, minorities are 47 percent more likely to live near a commercial hazardous waste facility compared to whites.[1] Enforcement of federal environmental laws against industries who violate these laws is 46% less in communities of minorities as well.[2] With an increase of hazardous waste and lack of regulation these communities are more prone to accidental spills and contamination of their water which leads to negative impacts on all aspects of their lives. From the numerous cases of environmental injustice and the individuals and communities who has and continue to speak out led to the movement of environmental justice. People of color are most affected makes it unmistakable that environmental injustice and environmental racism are intertwined.

One community who time after time has had their land taken from them and the right to clean water is the Navajo Nation. Throughout history the Navajo people have experienced environmental injustice and subjected to environmental racism with very little notice. From uranium mining in the 1920’s with its exorbitant pricey cleanup, to the recent EPA mine wastewater spill in the Animas River, the Navajo people have helped push forward the environmental justice movement to ensure that if anything, all people have one simple right, the right to clean water. This website looks at key events where the Navajo Nation have risen and helped advance the environmental justice movement.


Cite Created by Amber Martin



  1. Luke W. Cole and Sheila R. Foster, From the Ground Up: Environmental Racism and the Rise of the Environmental Justice Movement (New York: New York University Press, 2001), 10.
  2. Tseming Yang, “SRIC: Voices from the Earth – 2003,” SRIC: Voices from the Earth – 2003, accessed December 01, 2016, http://www.sric.org/voices/2003/v4n1/.