Video: Ensuring California rural poor not forgotten in CEQA
Job fair and panhandler in San Joaquin Valley, warehouse construction (Photo Credit: Angel Cardenas, John Guenther)
Caroline Farrell is the executive director for the Center on Race, Poverty and the Environment. Her organization works with-low income communities and communities of color, which are often impacted by development projects.
Farrell is a strong supporter of the California Environmental Quality Act (CEQA) because it requires public participation in the process of deciding whether a development or construction project really helps the community.
"We want to make sure that project improves the environment because the communities we serve are already overburdened by pollution and overcrowding."
Farrell is also suspicious of the claims that the jobs created by the project will benefit the community. She claims that the economic benefits trumpeted by the developers often don't reach the people she represents.
CEQA modernization was one of seven Signature Initiatives recommended by the California Economic Summit. We are following events in Sacramento and around the state as the Legislature prepares to act on the 42-year-old state environmental law.
CEQA in the 21st Century -- a series of news stories and individual perspectives designed to educate and spark dialogue on CEQA as the California Legislature revisits the role the environmental law will play in the future of our economy.