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environments and workplaces, human health and safety, and economic development. In addition, environmental justice is also concerned with issues that the environmental movement originally brought to national attention, such as visual aesthetics, sustainable environmental practices, and environmental quality. Transportation system changes have the potential to affect all of the above listed issues, for better or for worse. Because of this, environmental justice concerns often will be raised as the public evaluates the results of transportation policies, programs, and projects. While it is beyond the scope of this discussion to list all of the important concerns that may raise issues of environmental justice, the range of concerns pertinent to transportation planning can be categorized as follows: Human health and safety. Paramount in environmental justice is concern about protecting human health and safety. This concern is central to many of the most important environmental justice issues such as air quality and lead-based paint, among others. Safety-related transportation concerns fall in this category. Economic development. Environmental justice proponents believe that all persons should have equal access to economic opportunities. It is important to evaluate how transportation system changes affect economic development opportunities. The effects can be either beneficial or adverse. Society and culture. Environmental justice proponents argue that it is important to understand the many differing values and priorities of diverse social groups. Environmental justice is therefore concerned with issues such as sacred lands and community cohesion. Transportation construction projects can have considerable adverse impact on these issues. Natural environment. Environmental justice emphasizes effects to the natural environment that have a direct social consequence. So, for example, degradation of surface water quality becomes an important environmental justice issue in situations where protected populations use impaired water bodies for sustenance or recreation. THE ROLE OF ENVIRONMENTAL JUSTICE IN TRANSPORTATION PLANNING AND POLICY DEVELOPMENT Beginning in 1994, environmental justice was elevated to greater importance in transportation planning when President Clinton issued Executive Order 12898, Federal Actions to Address Environmental Justice in Minority Populations and Low-Income Populations (President, Proclamation 1994). Since that time, The United States Department of Transportation (U.S. DOT), the Federal Highway Administration (FHWA), and state and local agencies have worked to identify processes, techniques, and effective practices for making environmental justice an integral part of the planning process. Both the U.S. DOT (1997) and FHWA (1998) have issued orders and guidance on environmental justice. These policy statements are important, but they are not the only reasons to include full consideration of environmental justice in the transportation planning process. 4

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Transportation planning is concerned with setting in place transportation projects and programs that advance specified policy goals and objectives. These goals and objectives can be quite broad in scope, such as fostering a vibrant local economy, or narrower, such as ensuring that persons without autos have access to employment opportunities. Environmental justice fits into transportation planning by introducing consideration of distributive effects--how the benefits and costs of a proposed project would be experienced by different populations. Good transportation planning has both a technical component and a participatory component. Competent analyses of possible courses of action should be blended with interaction with the affected public. This guidebook is designed to assist planners in analyzing the distributive effects of possible projects so that these effects can be discussed with members of various population groups. It is important to stress that, depending on the analysis context, some effects are more likely to warrant extensive examination, perhaps using relatively advanced methods. It stands to reason that the effects that residents of a community feel are important should be addressed with special thoroughness and vigor. Effects that are likely to be consequential but not of paramount importance often can be examined using basic methods. In most cases, then, some effects will warrant extensive study, others will warrant a less exhaustive analysis, and still others may not require any attention. Incorporating environmental justice analysis into the transportation planning process is complex for at least four reasons: A balance has to be drawn between benefits to users of the facility and effects on other community residents. Even among community residents, numerous effects (some positive, some negative) interact and must be balanced. Various population groups within the community may be affected differently in terms of mixes of effects. People vary in their preferences and opinions, so that what is acceptable or even desirable to some may be unacceptable to others. The best way to think of environmental justice as a component of transportation planning is that it can help make transportation projects as beneficial as possible to populations that historically have not had an adequate voice in the planning process. As such, it is a way of strengthening transportation planning by making a wider array of effects understood. The fact that federal policy mandates consideration of environmental justice should not be the only driving force behind considering it; a more compelling argument is that it makes for good transportation planning. Actually, much of the underlying regulatory basis for including environmental justice in transportation planning and policy development stems from requirements of the National Environmental Policy Act of 1969 (NEPA) and other long-standing provisions such as the 1970 Federal-Aid Highway Act and the Civil Rights Act of 1964 (as amended). It is worth stressing that Section 1508.8 of the Council on Environmental Quality (CEQ) regulations for 5