Social Determinants of Health
(Adapted from Healthy People 2030)
The conditions in the environments where people are born, live, learn, work, play, worship, and age affect a wide range of health, functioning, and quality-of-life outcomes and risks. These also contribute to wide health disparities and inequities. Public health organizations and their partners in education, transportation, and housing must take action to improve the conditions in people's environments.
Safe housing, transportation, and neighborhoods
Racism, discrimination, and violence
Education, job opportunities, and income
Access to nutritious foods and physical activity opportunities
Polluted air and water
Language and literacy skills
(Adapted from Dogwood Alliance Biomass 101)
Wood pellets are seen by some as a solution to the climate change crisis, but they fall short in several ways:
While some wood pellets may be sourced from woody waste products, growing demand means that logging is a key source of the material. When forests are logged they are oftentimes replaced with plantations, which are not as biodiverse and do not sequester as much carbon as mature, native forests.
Wood pellets actually emit more carbon per unit of energy than coal. However, some energy accounting systems still view wood pellets as carbon-neutral sources of energy. Changes in land use and emissions when the pellets are burned far outweigh the sequestration from plantations that replace logged forests.
Logged forests and pellet mills have a variety of negative impacts on the surrounding environment and communities. The biomass industry is continuing to grow, so it is important that these issues are addressed and the poor health and environmental outcomes prevented.
Photo credit: Dogwood Alliance
Political Progress and Democracy for All
(Adapted from Southern Echo and League of Conservation Voters)
We need responsible, accountable governance that is responsive to the needs of the communities and constituency it serves.
A just and equitable democracy is one that works for everyone, which is necessary to achieve progress in both the cimate crisis and environmental injustices. Communities that are most affected by climate change, pollution, and environmental injustice are those that have also been historically denied access to the ballots. In 2021, 19 states passed 34 laws restricting voting access and more than 449 bills were introduced in 49 states. Most of these restrictions targeted Black voters and other voters of color, who voted in record numbers in 2020.
Southern Echo connects rural black communities of Mississippi to the civic process by increasing voter registration and access to polls and engages in community organizing to empower people towards collective action.