Priority: Environmental Justice

Environmental Justice
Charles Zacharie stands at the nation’s largest urban oil field, which borders his community of Baldwin Village.

Global warming is local, and Liberty Hill leads the resistance.

In a city famous for traffic and smog, it's no secret that pollution is a serious problem for Los Angeles. But for low income communities and communities of color, the dangers of exposure to environmental hazards are most severe. People who live in "environmental justice neighborhoods" combining economic disadvantage and dangerous pollution are at a greater risk for cancer and other health consequences than residents of affluent areas. For Liberty Hill, environmental justice is a cornerstone of social justice. We currently have three programs in place to fight for a safer, healthier, greener L.A.

  • Liberty Hill is a founding member of Stand Together Against Neighborhood Drilling (STAND-LA), a coalition of community organizations on the frontlines of ending oil drilling in residential neighborhoods. We provide grants and other support to STAND LA member organizations for their community organizing and public education activities. For more on Liberty Hill's support for Angelenos impacted by urban oil extraction, see our 2015 report Drilling Down: the Community Consequences of Expanded Oil Drilling and Development, a detailed study on the issue.
  • On Earth Day, 2016, Mayor Eric Garcetti signed a groundbreaking environmental justice policy known as Clean Up Green Up. Beginning with the pilot neighborhoods of Boyle Heights, Pacoima and Wilmington, Clean Up Green Up establishes green zones in toxic hotspot communities overburdened by pollution, implementing solutions to reduce air pollution while helping businesses adopt greener practices. It was a big day for Liberty Hill and Clean Up Green Up Coalition partners, Communities for a Better Environment, Pacoima Beautiful, Union de Vecinos and Coalition for a Safe Environment, who began planting seeds for the policy almost ten years ago. You can read the community-researched report Hidden Hazards: A Call to Action for Healthy Livable Communities or watch the Earth Day Enviro Victory! video on this page to see the signing. You can read our Guide to Green, a directory of programs and technical assistance for businesses wanting to go greener.
  • Assuring that Los Angeles' most disadvantaged communities are at the forefront of California's efforts to address global warming is another key focus for Liberty Hill. In collaboration with the California Climate Equity Coalition which won an historic commitment to invest 25% of the State's Greenhouse Gas Reduction Funds to benefit polluted and poor neighborhoods, we work to keep L.A.'s grassroots organizations informed of these programs and engaged in making them more effective. Read our first report on "Advantaging Communities" that argues for these funds to provide significant co-benefits and community engagement, and stand by for our upcoming report on "Green Zones and Grassroots" (November 2016) that analyzes how California's climate investments are currently spent in L.A. County.

Is an Active Oil Well Your Neighbor?

Environmental Justice Stories

Glen Dake

“The important thing is to not just give money but really participate,” says Glen Dake, a landscape architect, advocate for “healthy family living” issues in Los Angeles, and one of Liberty Hill’s most active donor-activists.