People often ask me “why should race, class, culture, justice and equity play a role in sustainability; isn’t sustainability about ‘green’ things, you know, ‘the environment’?” My response is usually along the lines that irrespective of whether we take a global, statewide or more local focus, a moral and ethical or practical approach, inequity and injustice resulting from, among other things, racism and classism are bad for the environment and bad for sustainability.
The highly trumpeted ‘US and Canada Green City Index‘ reported on July 4th is a very well researched report. The ranking methodology was developed by the Economist Intelligence Unit (EIU) in cooperation with report sponsor Siemens. In addition, input from an independent panel of urban sustainability experts provided important insights in the development of the Index. Ultimately however, it is based on eight environmental factors (CO2, energy, land use, buildings, transport, water, waste, air) and one political factor (governance).