The Department of Homeland Security indicates in its “Environmental Justice Strategy” document that the goal is to “include environmental justice practices in our larger mission efforts involving federal law enforcement and emergency response activities” in order to incorporate environmental justice and “secure the homeland.”
The “Environmental Justice Strategy” document leads off with this explanation:
Our Nation’s vision of homeland security is a homeland safe and secure, resilient against terrorism and other hazards, and where American interests and aspirations and the American way of life can thrive. In seeking to fulfill this vision, the Department of Homeland Security aspires to avoid burdening minority and low-income populations with a disproportionate share of any adverse human health or environmental risks associated with our efforts to secure the Nation.
According to the Department of Homeland Security, the role of promoting environmental justice is not simply overseeing the operations, but also “through regulatory permitting activities” alongside local and state governments.
In order to achieve that, the department is creating a Directive and Instruction on Environmental Justice to “outline DHS roles and responsibilities in the various agencies and programs.”
“Every Component of the Department has a role, some larger, some smaller, in ensuring that environmental justice has been considered in securing the homeland without placing disproportionate burdens on the health and environment of low income populations and minority populations,” asserts the DHS.
Interested parties may sign up to receive the DHS annual implementation progress report. And the DHS sees to it that non-English speakers are able to read any DHS materials regarding environmental justice. The DHS document explains:
Communication on initiatives related to environmental justice will implement the DHS Guidance to Federal Financial Assistance Recipients Regarding Title VI Prohibition Against National Origin Discrimination Affecting Limited English Proficient Persons … and with the Department’s forthcoming language access plan.
The DHS’ Environmental Justice Working Group involves 11 federal government agencies, including the TSA, FEMA, and Secret Service.
And what’s a government agency agenda without some sort of reference to climate change? The document on the DHS website lists concerns like “climate change” and “melting Arctic ice,” even as the U.S. National Snow and Ice Data Center reports that the amount of floating ice in the Arctic’s Bering Sea has “reached all-time record high levels last month.”