In the Gotham Gazette, Elizabeth Yeampierre, Executive Director of grantee UPROSE, and Angela Adrar, Executive Director of the Climate Justice Alliance, called for change in New York City.
In New York City, we have learned from hard experience that our energy, environmental, and economic systems are highly interrelated. Decades of underinvestment in low-income communities of color – particularly from the loss of blue-collar industries — compounds the profound vulnerability of these neighborhoods to climate change.
Beyond New York, 2017 saw ten consecutive Atlantic hurricanes, a historical first: Irma was the strongest storm to reach beyond the Caribbean; Harvey brought the greatest rainfall; and months after Maria wrought unprecedented devastation, half of Puerto Rico is still in the dark. For both the Global South and South Brooklyn, the time for incremental solutions has passed. We need an immediate and just transition towards a regenerative economy.
At UPROSE, a community-based organization in Sunset Park that advocates for sustainable economic development and environmental justice, our advocacy for climate justice is rooted in our struggles against displacement—displacement by rising waters and rising costs of living. The Climate Justice Alliance is a national collaborative of over 50 community-based and support organizations working to forge a scalable, and socio-economically just transition away from an extractive economy and towards local living economies.