Special Issue on the Biden Administration’s Justice40 Initiative
Ana Isabel Baptista, PhD
The New School
NY, NY 1001
Nicky Sheats, Esq., PhD
Center for American Progress
Submission Deadline: All manuscripts should be submitted for consideration by December 31, 2021.
In Executive Order 14008, issued on January 27, 2021, President Biden created a government-wide “Justice40” Initiative with the goal of delivering 40 percent of the overall benefits of relevant federal investments to disadvantaged communities and tracking performance toward that goal through an Environmental Justice Scorecard. The order initiates the development of a Climate and Environmental Justice Screening Tool, building off EPA’s EJSCREEN, to identify disadvantaged communities, and support the Justice40 Initiative.
The significance of the Justice40 commitment to environmental justice communities could be substantial if designed and implemented effectively. This initiative has the potential to deliver benefits that could include access to renewable energy and energy efficiency improvements, public transit, water infrastructure, climate-resilient affordable housing, training and workforce development, reductions in legacy pollution, and equitable and just community development, among others. But the history of delivering targeted benefits to EJ communities by the federal government is mixed. There are important justice considerations in the development, implementation, and evaluation of such a wide-reaching and complex set of commitments. This is a critical juncture for policymakers, EJ advocates, and scholars to weigh in on this initiative to ensure that the subsequent programs, targets, and metrics fulfill the ambition of the Justice40 initiative to deliver meaningful and measurable benefits to disadvantaged communities.
All manuscripts should be submitted online via ScholarOne Manuscripts submission by December 31, 2021. All submissions will be subject to a rigorous peer review. We encourage submissions of original research articles, policy briefs, impact papers, community voice submissions, legal analyses, and commentaries.
Suggested topic areas include, among others:
- What are important metrics and considerations that can help define EJ and disadvantaged communities?
- What are stakeholder engagement best practices to ensure meaningful input from EJ communities throughout the development and implementation of Justice40?
- What advances in screening methodologies can help inform the development of the Climate and Economic Justice Screening Tool?
- How can critical service gaps, such as those listed in the Executive Order, be addressed with targeted federal investment?
- How can federal investment benefits be defined?
- What are best practices that can help to avoid harm such as displacement or environmental impacts in EJ communities through the implementation of the initiative?
- How can existing federal programs be improved to deliver targeted benefits?
- What are strategies that can help overcome barriers to delivering targeted investment benefits in disadvantaged communities, including resistant local and state administrations?
- What new federal programs can help deliver benefits to EJ communities?
- How can the EJ Scorecard be developed to ensure Justice40 accountability and transparency and best measure progress and equity goals?
Queries to the editor to propose a topic prior to submission are encouraged. Please contact Dr. Ana Baptista to initiate your query or for any further details.