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EPA head: 'Journey to Justice' tour 'really personal for me'

EPA Environmental Justice
EPA Environmental Justice
Posted at 3:11 PM, Dec 03, 2021

RESERVE — EPA Administrator Michael Regan says a recently completed “Journey to Justice” tour from Mississippi to Texas enabled him to put “faces and names with this term that we call environmental justice.″

“I’m able to put faces and names with this term that we call environmental justice," Regan said at a news conference outside Michael Coleman’s ramshackle home in St. John Parish, where a blue tarp covers roof damage from Hurricane Ida. “This is what we are talking about when we talk about ‘fence-line communities’ — those communities who have been disproportionately impacted by pollution and are having to live in these conditions," Regan said, gesturing to the grain elevator in front of him and refinery behind. A railroad track runs just outside the property with the Mississippi River a few blocks down.

The five-day tour in mid-November highlighted low-income, mostly minority communities adversely affected by industrial pollution.

A former environmental regulator in his native North Carolina, Regan has made environmental justice a top priority since taking over as EPA chief in March.

The trip included visits to historically marginalized communities such as St. John and St. James parishes in Louisiana, along with cities such as New Orleans, Jackson, Miss., and Houston.

To read more about Michael Regan's visit, click here.
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