Skip to main content


Paper mill in Massachusetts

My recognition of the need for healthy communities for all began at an early age.

Growing up, if I happened to be standing across from the chemical plant that my father worked at when the wind changed direction, I smelled its presence and immediately knew it was not a good thing. I remember asking my father if it was safe for the surrounding community to breathe that noxious air. What didn’t occur to me at the time was how that air may have been negatively impacting my father and his co-workers.

Clean water rally Florida

Hundreds of people convened on Florida’s Capitol in Tallahassee on Feb. 18 to demand that the state’s leaders honor their right to clean water. Many of them rode for hours on buses from waterfront communities that have suffered heartbreaking episodes of green slime—toxic algae outbreaks sparked by pollution from sewage, manure and fertilizer.

Kids walking in a park

Black Lives Matter leaders brilliantly reframed Black History Month, Black Future Month, to focus on a separate cultural or political issue facing African Americans every day in February.

It was so appropriate, so smart, to set aside time to not only grapple with a large set of issues—indelibly linked to the structural, institutional and individual racism our communities face—but to give time to envisioning ourselves and our communities as we want them to be.

Stephanie Maddin-Smith

From a young age, I was keenly aware of the concept of injustice. At seven, I watched the Civil Rights era documentary Eyes on the Prize and was convinced that the best way to address injustice was through legal advocacy.  As I grew up, my conviction for the importance of voting and civil engagement continued to grow. One humorous milestone in my civic development involved my local newspaper chronicling my 11 year-old self bemoaning trickle-down economics and wishing I could vote.

Wind turbines

The Environmental Protection Agency’s Clean Power Plan is already on trial just two months into the new Congress.  The first hearing regarding the draft plan was in the Senate Environment and Public Works committee with Acting Assistant Administrator Janet McCabe. Throughout the meeting McCabe dodged heated questions from the Republican leadership in regard to the climate safeguards the agency has proposed.  Of course, what would one expect given that long-time climate science denier, Senator James Inhofe (R-OK), is now the committee chair.

The recent wave of disgusting air days in the Los Angeles region solidified the area’s necessity for both clean energy and clean ports to help us reclaim our air.

The estimated 18 million people living in the Los Angeles region deserve the reprieve that these two things can bring, and it starts with the twin ports of Los Angeles and Long Beach.

Ocean net destruction

Living on the Atlantic coast for most of my life, I grew accustomed to seeing dolphins, sea turtles and other sea critters on a regular basis. Nothing beats seeing a dolphin jump out of the ocean or watching dozens of sea turtle hatchlings make their way to the water for the first time. However, a new study published last month in Science found that these sightings may become increasingly rare in the next 150 years if humans do not act now to protect ocean species.

Oakland fracking march

On February 7th, thousands of Californians marched in the streets of downtown Oakland in what has been billed as the largest anti-fracking rally in U.S. history. They were there to demand real climate leadership from Governor Jerry Brown, calling for a shift to 100% renewable energy and an end to fracking and other dangerous oil activities that harm our water, our health and our communities.


About the Earthjustice Blog

unEARTHED is a forum for the voices and stories of the people behind Earthjustice's work. The views and opinions expressed in this blog do not necessarily represent the opinion or position of Earthjustice or its board, clients, or funders. Learn more about Earthjustice.