Climate Justice IS Racial Justice
We, at Dispatch Goods, recognize that the effects of climate change disproportionately affect Black and other marginalized communities in this country. We want to use our platform to spark discussion on the connected fight for climate justice and racial justice, as well as amplify Black voices in the environmental community. While we recognize there is a lot to cover on these two topics, we thought we’d start with what we know a lot about. Disposable Foodware.
What do we know?
- Marginalized groups of people are disproportionality affected by disposable foodware consumption
Where do these communities see these effects?
- Most commonly, we see them in health issues and economic disparity
But… how does me, getting my meals delivered in disposable containers, make those inequalities worse?
- Great question. Let’s start with the upstream supply chain of plastic foodware. It looks like this:
- Oil is extracted via drilling/fracking
- The oil is then processed via refineries/production plants to convert it into plastic resin
- The resin gets manufactured into the containers you are most familiar with seeing in your takeout food orders
All of the above lead to...
- Irrevocable environmental damage (yikes!)-- mostly air pollution, waterway contamination, and land degradation
- This is experienced most acutely by the people that live and work in close proximity of those areas, which are marginalized communities and communities of color
But it’s not done after the container gets made
- After the takeout container completes its average 12 minutes of use, it is then disposed of via recycling, landfill, incineration, or litter
- Similar to the upstream supply stream, the downstream disposal sites generate air, water, and land pollution, thus further marginalizing those already marginalized
If you’re like us, you want to DO something about this! Here are some ideas, but we’d love to hear yours too!
- Reduce your single-use food container use, and if you do order take-out that comes in a plastic container, opt for plastic #1 & 2 and rinse them before you recycle them!
- Vote for candidates who recognize the interconnectedness of climate and racial justice, and want to change the status quo
- Follow kick-butt environmentalists and organizations who are highlighting these issues and see how you can get involved (or amplify their work/voices). Here are a few of our faves: