This topic for UC Berkeley's Breakthroughs magazine was almost too big for the article's modest word count, but making these connections accessible and understandable for a broad audience was worth the effort. Thankfully, the researchers helped me boil down their complex work and the editors made sure the economic format didn't result in sacrificing any key points.
The phrase “I can’t breathe” has become connective tissue, [Morello-Frosch] notes. George Floyd’s tragic plea is a metaphor for police violence against Black and Brown people, but it also conjures the hallmark symptom of the sickest COVID-19 patients and evokes the respiratory impacts of living in polluted areas—even without the smoky air of climate-change-driven, high-intensity fire seasons. “Our country needs to keep making these connections between justice, sustainability, and equity as we forge our economic recovery,” she says. “A recovery strategy has to provide economic and climate-mitigation opportunities that protect the most vulnerable among us.” Read More.