Fumes Across the Fence-Line

African American communities in the United States face serious health risks caused by air pollution from the oil and gas industry. Higher poverty levels increase these threats, translating to a disproportionate health burden on African American communities.

Why Take a look:

Air pollution leads to life-threatening health risks for communities of color near oil and gas facilities. A result of the systemic oppression perpetuated by the fossil fuel industry, communities of color are more likey to be exposed to health, economic, and social hazards. This report provides recommendations for implementing safeguards with the involvement of community members, decision-makers, industry to create meaningful change

Key Takeaways:

Risks associated with air pollution in African American communities: 

  • More than 1 million African Americans live within a half mile of existing natural gas facilities
  • African American communities face an elevated risk of cancer due to air toxics emissions from natural gas development
  • Over 1 million African Americans live in counties that face a cancer risk above EPA’s level of concern from toxics emitted by natural gas facilities
  • The air in many African American communities violates air quality standards for ozone smog.
  • Rates of asthma are relatively high in communities of color, African American children are burdened by 138,000 asthma attacks and 101,000 lost school days each year
  • More than 6.7 million African Americans live in the 91 counties with oil refineries.

Take Action:

1. We must all learn about the oil and gas facilities that are in our communities

2. Support technology that cuts air pollution

3. We must urge national leaders to address the pollution from the oil and gas sector

4. Urge our states to reduce oil and gas air pollution


Download the report

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