Publication Date

2009

Comments

Working Paper 186

Abstract

Measures of corporate environmental justice performance can be a valuable tool in e orts to promote corporate social responsibility and to document systematic patterns of environmental injustice. This paper develops such a measure based on the extent to which toxic air emissions from industrial facilities disproportionately impact racial and ethnic minorities and low-income people. Applying the measure to 100 major corporate air polluters in the United States, we nd wide variation in the extent of disproportional exposures. In 54 cases, minorities, who represent 31.8 percent of the U.S. population, bear excess burden; in 15 of these cases, the minority share exceeds half of the total human health impacts from the rm's industrial air pollution. In 66 cases, poor people, who represent 12.8 percent of the U.S. population, bear excess burden.

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