The urge to punish is not only about revenge – unfairness can unleash it, too

Unfairness alone is upsetting enough to drive people to punish lucky recipients of unfair outcomes.

Paul Deutchman, PhD Candidate in Psychology, Boston College • conversation
Sept. 30, 2020 ~6 min

Tags: morality psychology inequality competition motivation behavioral-economics evolutionary-psychology psychology-research fairness morals punishment justice deterrence stealing moral-outrage theft inequity social-inequity

The risk of preterm birth rises near gas flaring, reflecting deep-rooted environmental injustices in rural America

A study shows that low-income communities and communities of color are bearing the brunt of the energy industry's pollution in the region. The risks also extend to the unborn.

Lara Cushing, Assistant Professor of Environmental Health Sciences, Fielding School of Public Health, University of California, Los Angeles • conversation
Aug. 20, 2020 ~8 min

Tags: health environment pregnancy pollution industry air-pollution environmental-justice oil air social-justice hispanics flaring

Don't blame cats for destroying wildlife – shaky logic is leading to moral panic

Framing cats as responsible for declines in biodiversity is based on faulty scientific logic and fails to account for the real culprit – human activity.

Francisco J. Santiago-Ávila, Postdoctoral Researcher, University of Wisconsin-Madison • conversation
July 30, 2020 ~7 min

Tags: conservation biodiversity birds ethics mice science australia rats cats sixth-mass-extinction conservation-biology logic justice moral-panic predator compassion apex-predators habitat-degradation

Fine-particle air pollution has decreased across the US, but poor and minority communities are still the most polluted

A new study shows that while fine particle air pollution has declined nationwide over the past 40 years, the health and environmental benefits haven't been shared evenly.

Jay Shimshack, Associate Professor of Public Policy and Economics, University of Virginia • conversation
July 30, 2020 ~9 min

Tags: public-health inequality air-pollution environmental-justice particulates us-environmental-protection-agency environmental-health us-environmental-policy monitoring


Living near active oil and gas wells in California tied to low birth weight and smaller babies

A new study finds an association between living near active oil and gas wells in California and low birth-weight infants, adding to findings elsewhere on health risks from oil and gas production.

Lara Cushing, Assistant Professor of Health Education, San Francisco State University • conversation
June 18, 2020 ~8 min

Tags: environmental-justice oil california us-energy-policy los-angeles environmental-health natural-gas oil-and-gas-industry oil-and-gas-field low-birth-weight-babies

High-tech surveillance amplifies police bias and overreach

Police forces across the country now have access to surveillance technologies that were recently available only to national intelligence services. The digitization of bias and abuse of power followed.

Andrew Guthrie Ferguson, Professor of Law, American University • conversation
June 12, 2020 ~9 min

Tags: protest policing big-data facial-recognition surveillance police predictive-analytics george-floyd big-brother civil-liberties black-lives-matter police-reform racial-justice

City compost programs turn garbage into 'black gold' that boosts food security and social justice

Turning food scraps and yard trimmings into compost improves soil, making it easier for people to grow their own food. City composting programs spread those benefits more widely.

Sue Ishaq, Assistant Professor of Animal and Veterinary Sciences, University of Maine • conversation
June 11, 2020 ~9 min

Tags: climate-change soil microbes compost methane food-waste soil-carbon seattle gardening san-francisco social-justice equity landfills

Doctors can't treat COVID-19 effectively without recognizing the social justice aspects of health

While African Americans account for about 14% of the US population, they have accounted for about 60% of deaths from the virus. Several physicians offer an idea they think could help.

Ryan Huerto, Family Medicine Physician, Health Services Researcher and Clinical Lecturer, University of Michigan • conversation
June 3, 2020 ~8 min

Tags:  covid-19  health-disparities  medical-education  coronavirus-2020  social-justice  health-gaps  health-equity

Native American tribes' pandemic response is hamstrung by many inequities

Many Native American tribes are reporting high COVID-19 infection rates. State and federal agencies are impeding tribes' efforts to handle the pandemic themselves.

Stephanie Malin, Associate Professor of Sociology; Co-Founder and Steering Committee Member, Center for Environmental Justice at CSU, Colorado State University • conversation
June 1, 2020 ~10 min

Tags: covid-19 pandemic health-disparities native-americans coronavirus-2020 environmental-justice environmental-health oil-and-gas salmon north-dakota-access-pipeline alaska-natives border-wall

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