Green Infrastructure Toolkit


Equity Tools

The following resources include local governments who have incorporated equity into resilience planning, federal grant money that has been used for green infrastructure job training for prison inmates, social vulnerability mapping tools, and resources for meaningfully engaging communities to set goals. Some of the examples are green infrastructure-specific, and some are related to climate adaptation more generally.

Related Resources

  NYC Climate Justice Agenda 2016: Strengthening the Mayor's OneNYC Plan

In this report, the NYC Environmental Justice Alliance (NYC-EJA) presents an analysis of Mayor Bill de Blasio’s OneNYC Plan and recommends ways to strengthen the city government’s efforts to cultivate climate justice. The document is organized under five themes: (1) climate adaptation and mitigation, (2) equity and infrastructure, (3) public health, (4) community preparedness, and (5) community-based planning. Under each theme, NYC-EJA lists the strengths and shortcomings of OneNYC, as well as a set of recommendations to build a more just, equitable, and resilient city. 

  Equity Foundations: USDN Capacity Building Program

In September 2015, the Urban Sustainability Directors Network (USDN), in partnership with the Government Alliance on Race and Equity and the Center for Social Inclusion, launched a professional development program for sustainability directors and their staff for advancing racial equity into sustainability planning and development. The program became available online and includes a holistic curriculum of five webinars, videos and worksheets to support local government staff in applying an equity lens to sustainability projects. A facilitator’s guide is designed for equity advocates to lead workshops using the related videos and worksheets.

  South Ironbound Resiliency Action Plan (Newark, New Jersey)

The South Ironbound Resiliency Action Plan lays out resiliency goals for a portion of the Ironbound neighborhood in the East Ward of Newark, New Jersey called South Ironbound, that will inform funding priorities and inform longer term climate mitigation and adaptation goals. The neighborhood is prone to flooding due to sewer back-ups, heavy rain storms, and storm surge. The report is organized into strategic components related to resilience. For each strategy, there is an in-depth review of major actions and implementation considerations.

  Resilient New Orleans: Strategic Action to Shape Our Future City

In August 2015, the City of New Orleans released its Resilient New Orleans strategy outlining the city's vision and plan for building a more equitable, adaptable, and prosperous New Orleans that will serve the next generations of residents. The strategy was developed by the City of New Orleans as part of the Rockefeller Foundation’s 100 Resilient Cities Initiative. Resilient New Orleans identifies a number of ongoing and supporting actions that the city is already taking, as well as 14 new strategies that New Orleans will implement in support of its resilience vision.

  EJSCREEN: EPA Environmental Justice Screening and Mapping Tool

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has developed a new environmental justice (EJ) mapping and screening tool called EJSCREEN. EJSCREEN allows users to access high-resolution environmental and demographic information for locations in the United States, and compare their selected locations to the rest of the state, EPA region, or the nation.

  City of Portland and Multnomah County, Oregon Climate Action Plan 2015

The City of Portland and Multnomah County, Oregon 2015 Climate Action Plan (CAP) presents a plan to reduce local carbon emissions 80 percent below 1990 levels by 2050 with specific objectives to achieve by 2030. The Plan also identifies over 100 strategies to both reduce local carbon emissions, and adapt to and prepare for climate change in the short-term. The CAP states that its success is dependent on ability to create jobs, advance social equity, improve public health, strengthen natural systems and enhance quality of life, as co-benefits of these mitigation and adaptation strategies.   

  One New York: The Plan for a Strong and Just City (One NYC)

The 2015 plan for New York City, One New York: The Plan for a Strong and Just City (OneNYC) was originally released in 2007, and again in 2011 under the name "PlaNYC."  As in past iterations of this report, OneNYC addresses New York City’s economic growth, sustainability, and resiliency - but also seeks to address issues of equity, and provides a strategic plan for collectively achieving this goal. OneNYC lays out strategies for dealing with income inequality along with plans for managing climate change impacts, while establishing the platform for another century of economic growth and vitality.

  Memphis, Tennessee Mid-South Regional GreenPrint

In 2015, the Mid-South Regional Commission created the Mid-South Regional GreenPrint as a visioning document for the tri-state area of the greater Memphis region for the next 25 years. The plan envisions a regional network of green space, including connected parks and greenways, or Greenprint. The intention of the Greenprint plan is to address long-term housing and land use, resource conservation, environmental protection, accessibility, community health and wellness, transportation alternatives, economic development, neighborhood engagement, and social equity in the Greater Memphis Area.

  NAACP Equity in Building Resilience in Adaptation Planning

From the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP), this report contains a list of equity based indicators that are measures of vulnerability and resilience to climate change impacts. The indicators were developed for both pre-existing vulnerabilities and assets, as well as for processes and results of resiliency planning. The aim of this resource is for city planners, community organizations, elected officials, and other decision-makers to consider these equity based indicators as they design climate adaptation plans. 

  EPA Urban Waters Small Grants

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) Urban Waters Program aims to restore urban waters in ways that also benefit community and economic revitalization. With a focus on vulnerable populations and environmental justice, the EPA recognizes that healthy and accessible water in urban areas can help grow local businesses and enhance educational, recreational, social and employment opportunities in local communities. EPA will support projects and build partnerships with a variety of federal, state, tribal, and local partners that foster increased connection, understanding, and stewardship of local waterways through the Urban Waters Program.  

  Equity and Environmental Justice