In Maryland, under the leadership of Governor Wes Moore and Secretary Serena McIlwain, the Maryland Department of the Environment is committed to addressing injustices that have occurred throughout history in communities located next to industry that have been exposed to higher levels of pollution.
Everyone deserves clean land, clean water and clean air.
We must ensure that communities of every culture, race, ethnicity, and socioeconomic background get fair protection from environmental and health hazards, as well as equal access to the decision-making process for environmental policies.
Our state, nation and world is increasingly dealing with severe storms and other effects of climate change, such as extreme heat events, as well as pollution from industry and poor air quality from wildfires. The people most affected by these environmental challenges are our most underserved and overburdened communities in Maryland.
Environmental justice is defined under Maryland state law as "equal protection from environmental and public health hazards for all people regardless of race, income, culture, and social status."
The Maryland Department of the Environment is addressing these environmental disparities by building relationships with communities and making sure they have the tools and knowledge to be involved in the processes.
The department has taken action to make the following improvements to operations for environmental justice:
Find out more about our plans to address environmental justice in Maryland: