Environmental Justice Tour Calls Attention to Pollution in West Louisville

by Erica Peterson on September 28, 2011

The Catholic Passionist community is calling attention to pollution on Louisville’s West End though an environmental justice tour. Several Louisvillians took the tour this afternoon.

The trip was organized by the Passionist Earth and Spirit Center, and took participants on a tour of the power plants, chemical factories and waste disposal sites concentrated in west Louisville.

Tim Darst led the tour, which the center has been doing for two years. He says people in Louisville need to be aware of the pollution, which disproportionately affects minorities and low-income residents.

“Most major faith traditions—at least the three Abrahamic religions of Islam, Judaism and Catholicism we have a strong scriptural message to love your neighbor,” he said. “And if you’re going to love your neighbor, you can’t pollute your neighbor’s air and you can’t pollute your neighbor’s water.”

Darst says the tours help people draw connections between modern lifestyles and pollution.

“A lot of people, well, all of us who use electricity, who buy plastic products, it’s important for us to realize that when we do that we do pollute our neighbor’s air and water,” he said. “And a lot of people don’t have the opportunity to go down and see where that happens, make that connection.”

The Earth and Spirit Center offers the tour every other month and by request.

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