Recommended reading - "Sacrifice Zones" by Steve Lerner

posted Mar 2, 2011, 6:02 PM by Unknown user   [ updated Mar 4, 2011, 9:12 AM ]
This book should be required reading for Como residents and others living on Minneapolis' East Side that are concerned about pollution, the environment and human health.  Lessons learned in this book can help communities such as ours better advocate for ourselves on these issues.  These skills are especially important since both Northeast and Southeast Minneapolis are home to many, many industries.

The Hennepin County Library system has a few copies of this book available for lending.

Sacrifice Zones
TheFront Lines of Toxic Chemical Exposure in the United States
Steve Lerner
Foreword by Phil Brown

Across the United States, thousands of people, most of them in low-income or minority communities, live next to heavily polluting industrial sites. Many of them, like Ruth Reed, reach a point at which they say "Enough is enough." After living for years with poisoned air and water, contaminated soil, and pollution-related health problems, they start to take action—organizing, speaking up, documenting the effects of pollution on their neighborhoods. 

In Sacrifice Zones, Steve Lerner tells the stories of twelve communities, from Brooklyn to Pensacola, that rose up to fight the industries and military bases causing disproportionately high levels of chemical pollution. He calls these low-income neighborhoods "sacrifice zones"—repurposing a Cold War term coined by U.S. government officials to designate areas contaminated with radioactive pollutants during the manufacture of nuclear weapons. And he argues that residents of a new generation of sacrifice zones, tainted with chemical pollutants, need additional regulatory protections.