DHS Introduces Green Police

By:  Raven Clabough
04/13/2012
       
DHS Introduces Green Police

The Department of Homeland Security has announced that it will be creating an “environmental justice” unit that will be overseeing environmental regulations, alongside local governments. The unit’s role of enforcing environmental regulations has prompted critics to refer to the new department as the “green police.”

 
 

The Department of Homeland Security has announced that it will be creating an “environmental justice” unit that will be overseeing environmental regulations, alongside local governments. The unit’s role of enforcing environmental regulations has prompted critics to refer to the new department as the “green police.”

 
The DHS defines environmental justice as “the commitment of the Federal Government … to avoid placing disproportionately high and adverse effects on the human health and environment of minority populations and low-income populations.”
 
The Department of Homeland Security indicates in its "Environmental Justice Strategy" document that the goal is to “include environmental justice practices in our larger mission efforts involving federal law enforcement and emergency response activities” in order to incorporate environmental justice and “secure the homeland.”
 
The "Environmental Justice Strategy" document leads off with this explanation:
 
Our Nation’s vision of homeland security is a homeland safe and secure, resilient against terrorism and other hazards, and where American interests and aspirations and the American way of life can thrive. In seeking to fulfill this vision, the Department of Homeland Security aspires to avoid burdening minority and low-income populations with a disproportionate share of any adverse human health or environmental risks associated with our efforts to secure the Nation.
 
According to the Department of Homeland Security, the role of promoting environmental justice is not simply overseeing the operations, but also “through regulatory permitting activities” alongside local and state governments.
 
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