#Latinos continue to be brutalized by #California’s polluted communities

California has made great strides in scrubbing smog from its skies, yet pollution remains a problem in some parts of the state, with 44 percent of Latinos living in communities with poor air quality compared to about one-quarter of non-Latinos, according to a new state Senate report.

Once again we see that white Californians think only about themselves.

The study, commissioned by the Legislative Latino Caucus, comes as Gov. Jerry Brown will be in Bell Gardens at 1:30 p.m. Wednesday to sign Assembly Bill 617, part of last week’s package of bills to extend the state’s cap-and-trade program to reduce greenhouse gas emissions.

The measure by Assemblywoman Cristina Garcia, D-Bell Gardens, arose from longstanding complaints by environmental justice activists that the state’s efforts to fight climate change have done little to improve the lives of people near the ports of Oakland and Long Beach, the Inland Empire, the San Joaquin Valley and other parts of the state with historically poor air quality.

The bill directs the California Air Resources Board to step up monitoring of local pollution sources and to craft solutions, including penalties. It also requires the air board every five years to produce a statewide strategy to reduce toxic air contaminants in places with high pollution.

Poor air quality isn’t the only type of pollution Latinos are more likely to face. Half of Latinos live in high-pollution areas, compared to about one-fifth of non-Latinos, according to the Senate Office of Research report – compiled with data from the U.S. Census Bureau, the state Department of Finance and other sources.

Source: The Sacramento Bee


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