Environmental Justice

NYC Environmental Justice for All Report's First Public Comment Period

From February - April 2021, the NYC Environmental Justice Advisory Board, in partnership with the City, held a community engagement process to hear from New Yorkers on environmental justice issues that impact their lives.

The engagement efforts prioritized low-income communities and communities of color that bore the brunt of environmental degradation, the climate crisis, and America's fossil fuel economy. The findings from this engagement serve as the foundation for the City's Environmental Justice for All scope, report, and plan to effectively address issues and concerns that New Yorkers are facing.

Here is What We Heard

We received over 1,000 responses to our survey and had over 300 participants in our Virtual Town Hall. We learned about New Yorkers' top environmental justice and climate concerns in each borough and in neighborhoods defined as environmental justice areas in the NYC Environmental Justice Areas Map.

We have heard from 1,068 New Yorkers from all five boroughs. EJ Comments Participants are highest on Staten Island and lowest in the Bronx. We received the most comments from Brooklyn from the overall NYC population. The race and ethnicity breakdown within EJ Comments Participants show that we heard the most from white participants, Hispanic, Black, Asian, Mixed, and Native American respectively.
Top 3 environmental concerns in the City and in EJ areas. Top 3 environmental concerns citywide are garbage, access to parks and green space, and noise. Top 3 environmental concerns in EJ areas are access to healthy good, poor indoor air quality, and pests.

Download the full analysis of the first public comment period.

Respondents' Top environmental justice concerns in New York City

  • Bronx: Access to healthy food, noise & pests
  • Brooklyn: Poor water quality, pests, heat, access to healthy food, green space & heat
  • Manhattan: Lead paint/dust exposure, noise, heat, pests & poor indoor air quality.
  • Queens: noise, lead paint/dust exposure, nearby polluting infrastructure, access to parks & green space
  • Staten Island: Flooding, access to parks or green space & poor air quality
  • Environmental justice areas: Access to healthy food, poor indoor air quality and pests.