Environmental Justice
& Civic Engagement


Working at the intersection of social inequity and the ecological crisis.

Low-income communities and communities of color are not only the most vulnerable to the impacts of climate change, they are also more likely to live near toxic sites that release pollution into local air, water and soil that harm human and environmental health. CEE helps to connect our civic discourse to frontline communities and ensure that they lead the way in raising public consciousness and creating change.

Fellow Spotlight



Meet William J. Barber III

William joined CEE as a Fellow in 2021. He is an environmental and climate justice scholar and advocate, with nearly a decade of social justice organizing experience and deep academic training in both the science and the law behind environmental and climate issues.
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Advocacy & Movement Building

Advocacy and Movement Building

Mountain Valley Pipeline (MVP) is a proposed 303-mile-long fracked gas pipeline that is steamrolling its way through Virginia and West Virginia. The pipeline threatens fresh water, land and life in Appalachia. On Thursday, April 7 at 7:00 PM ET, we gathered on Zoom for ‘We Believe We Will Win: A Rally to Stop the Mountain Valley Pipeline,’ bringing together community leaders in Virginia and West Virginia to share how they have achieved significant wins thus far, what it will take to stop this disastrous pipeline, and how you can help.



Black Interfaith in the Time of Climate Crisis

Interfaith America and the Center for Earth Ethics convened “Black Interfaith in the Time of Climate Crisis” on May 17, 2022 at the National Museum of African American History and Culture in Washington, D.C.  The event addressed “the crucial role of Black faith leaders and spiritual traditions in the environmental justice movement and the unique challenges climate change poses to Black communities.”  Speakers included Ibrahim Abdul-Martin, co-founder of Green Squash Consulting and a Black Interfaith fellow at Interfaith America; CEE Executive Director Karenna Gore; William J. Barber III, director of climate and environmental justice at The Climate Reality Project and CEE Fellow; Crystal Cavalier, co-founder of Seven Directions of Service, and Pamelo Ayo Yetunde, co-founder of Center of the Heart. 

Intersection: Environmental Justice & Civic Engagement | Sustainability & Global Affairs

The Center for Earth Ethics hosted a “A Consultation on Air: St James Parish” as part of our Values, Culture and Spirituality Consultation Series in support of the UN Decade of Action on Ecosystem Restoration.  Watch Now and Learn More


From the blog

Call to Action – Mountain Valley Pipeline

Now is the time to act. The Mountain Valley Pipeline has asked the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission to extend MVP’s Certificate of Public Convenience and Necessity until October 13, 2026. This extension, which would be the second extension granted, would give MVP four more years to complete the project. The… Read more

Black Interfaith in the Time of Climate Crisis

On Tuesday, May 17, Executive Director Karenna Gore participated at “Black Interfaith in the Time of Climate Crisis” at the National Museum of African American History and Culture in Washington, D.C.  The event addressed “the crucial role of Black faith leaders and spiritual traditions in the environmental justice movement and… Read more

Meeting the Moment: Earth Day 2022

The climate crisis is a present, existential threat, yet there’s still time to change course and genuine reasons to be hopeful. That was a central message at the “Earth Day 2022: Life Force” celebration on April 22. This unique gathering, organized by the Center for Earth Ethics in collaboration with the… Read more

Karenna Gore to Discuss “Widening the Circle” at Yale, February 23

“Widening the Circle” Wednesday, February 23, 2022 12 p.m. New Haven & New York _____________________ On Wednesday, February 23, 2022, at noon Eastern Time, Executive Director Karenna Gore will address Yale students and guests as a session in the School of the Environment BIOMES speaker series. The title of Ms.… Read more

William J. Barber III Joins CEE as Fellow

Environmental justice scholar and advocate William J. Barber III has joined CEE as a fellow for the Environmental Justice and Civic Engagement Program. He brings to the Center nearly a decade of social justice organizing experience along with deep academic training in both the science and the law behind environmental… Read more

Aliou Niang to Discuss Postcolonial Biblical Criticism on November 5

Postcolonial Poetics: Aliou Niang on the Human-Nature Relationship Friday, November 5, 2021 – Online 9 a.m. Los Angeles | 12 p.m. New York | 4 p.m. Dakar | 5 p.m. Paris REGISTER TODAY How can we understand the Bible and other faith teachings in the context of today’s ecological crisis?… Read more

Karenna Gore Denounces “Terrible Burden” of Mountain Valley Pipeline

On the 49th anniversary of the Clean Water Act, Executive Director Karenna Gore penned a guest column, “The common wealth of water,” in the Virginia Mercury. Gore urged Virginia’s state government not to certify the planned Mountain Valley Pipeline, which would bring fracked gas from West Virginia to southern Virginia. “Virginians… Read more

White House Announces Environmental Justice Advisory Council Members including Catherine Coleman Flowers

MARCH 29, 2021 • STATEMENTS AND RELEASES Today, the White House announced the members of the White House Environmental Justice Advisory Council. The advisory council will provide advice and recommendations to the Chair of the Council on Environmental Quality (CEQ) and the White House Environmental Justice Interagency Council on how to address… Read more

Water, Sanitation and Inequality in the US – Catherine Coleman Flowers project with The Guardian

Help us Investigate Sanitation Inequality in the US March 9, 2021 Categories: Public Programs & Events We know that access to sanitation – just like access to clean air and water – is so often divided along race and class lines. But while there’s never been more awareness that environmental racism… Read more

The Stench of American Neglect

by Caroline Fraser for The New York Review In her new book, the activist Catherine Coleman Flowers chronicles her efforts to expose criminally deficient sanitation in her home county of Lowndes, Alabama and around the US. February 25, 2021 issue In 1941 Walker Evans, a photographer, and James Agee, a… Read more