Interconnected Injustices: Understanding Cumulative Impacts

A virtual event examining how interconnected injustices can impact communities and the importance of incorporating cumulative impacts into environmental policymaking


April 10, 2024


12:00–1:00 p.m. ET

Event Details

Across the United States, low-income communities and communities of color are subject to an array of environmental burdens such as pollution, limited healthcare, and systemic racism. These stressors aren’t independent: one burden can make individuals disproportionately vulnerable to others.

However, cumulative impacts are not always considered by environmental justice screening tools and other policy processes. There have been some recent changes in the US to address this problem. New state laws are attempting to address cumulative impacts, and federal funding through the Inflation Reduction Act and Justice40 is largely geared toward Environmental Justice initiatives. With these new policies, it is critical that the tools policymakers are using to carry out environmental policy incorporate cumulative impacts.

On Wednesday, April 10, Resources for the Future (RFF) hosted “Environmental Justice: Understanding Cumulative Impacts,” the second webinar in our 2024 Exposure event series. At this event, we dove deep into these cumulative impacts and the importance of understanding them when shaping environmental policy.


  • Ana Baptista, The New School
  • Peggy Shepard, WE ACT for Environmental Justice
  • Lucija Muehlenbachs, University of Calgary and Resources for the Future (Moderator)

Event Video

About the Exposure 2024 Series

The Environmental Justice Movement has been a part of community conversations for decades and has finally become a focus of national policy. For many low-income neighborhoods, households of color, tribal communities, and other marginalized groups, environmental injustice compounds a legacy of social, economic, and political disenfranchisement.

In 2021–2022, Resources for the Future (RFF) and the Urban Institute hosted a series of webinars known as Exposure, to bring academic, government, and community leaders together to assess environmental justice research across disciplines while exploring gaps in knowledge. In 2024, RFF is holding a second installment where we will take a deep dive into the equity and environmental justice impacts of federal climate policies, particularly in light of the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law, the Inflation Reduction Act, and novel state policies that reflects Justice40 Initiative priorities.

Click here to learn more about Exposure 2024.


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