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Mecklenburg County begins public meetings as it drafts environmental justice plan

Mecklenburg County

Mecklenburg County is working with a consultant to develop an Environmental Justice Action Plan. The idea is to identify and work to end disparities in water and air pollution, food and housing. County officials are seeking public feedback at a series of public meetings this month and next.

Mecklenburg Sustainability Manager Erin Stanforth said she and other officials already have been hearing from the community.

"We’ve visited farmer’s markets, pop-up events and festivals asking folks what environmental injustices are concerning to them,” Stanforth said in a press release. “We’ve heard concerns about air pollution, access to grocery stores and water pollution in our creeks and rivers. And now we are including in-person outreach sessions to hear more stories from the community.”

Mecklenburg County has hired the Hummingbird Firm of Atlanta last fall to help develop the plan.

The first meeting was Tuesday afternoon at West Charlotte Recreation Center. Additional community sessions are planned:

  • Wednesday, Sept. 14, 6 p.m. - 8 p.m. - West Charlotte Recreation Center 
  • Oct. 4, 10 a.m. to noon - Eastway Regional Recreation Center 
  • Oct. 6, 6- 8 p.m. - Eastway Regional Recreation Center 
  • Oct. 12, Noon to  2 p.m. - William R. Davie Park 
  • Oct. 18, 6 p.m. - 8 p.m. - Northern Regional Recreation Center 
  • Oct. 19, 6 p.m. - 8 p.m. - CPCC Matthews, Levine Campus 
  • Oct. 20, 6 p.m. - 8 p.m.- Hickory Grove Recreation Center 
  • Oct. 25, 6 p.m. - 8 p.m. - David B. Waymer Recreation Center 
  • Oct. 27, 6 p.m. - 8 p.m. - Berewick Recreation Center 

Find out more about the Environmental Justice Plan at https://www.mecknc.gov/ej/.

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David Boraks previously covered climate change and the environment for WFAE. See more at www.wfae.org/climate-news. He also has covered housing and homelessness, energy and the environment, transportation and business.