OR&R Staff Participate in Environmental Justice Workshop
NOVEMBER 8, 2021 ─ On Nov. 2, the Office of Science and Technology Policy’s Subcommittee on Ocean Science and Technology hosted a panel discussion on Environmental Justice (EJ). The discussion provided an excellent introduction to the topic of environmental justice and OR&R staff who joined improved their understanding of the importance of the role our own work can play in perpetuating environmental injustices.
The introduction was followed by presentations from two speakers from the Bureau of Ocean Energy Management and our NOS AA, Nicole LeBoeuf. Discussions included environmental injustices such as limited engagement and interaction with historically excluded communities and lack of consideration of the impacts resulting from repeated or cumulative trauma or exposure. Several ideas were shared could help improve how we include consideration of EJ in our work including tailoring data to meet the needs of disproportionately impacted communities, understanding local climate impacts, sharing information and responsibilities to increase resources, and building trust and relationships with communities who we have not previously prioritized.
EJ was also a topic discussed at the recent OR&R Communications Team's Operational Meeting during a panel discussion with OR&R staff and an EJ expert from EPA. OR&R staff shared whether and how we are addressing EJ within OR&R (and how we might start to do this better).