In a groundbreaking move, New York state has developed guidelines for ensuring that low-income and minority neighborhoods are not disproportionately subjected to environmental health risks by developers. The environmental-justice guidelines were drafted by the state Department of Environmental Conservation to limit the ability of developers to build unpopular and potentially hazardous projects in communities that lack the necessary resources to oppose them. Under the new policy, a project with potential environmental-justice problems will receive additional scrutiny to determine how it will affect the proposed neighborhood. In addition, existing projects will be examined to determine their impact on local communities.
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