Exploring Environmental Justice Issues in Latino communities in the Treasure Valley  in Idaho

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Virginia Tech

This thesis explores environmental justice issues in Latino communities in the Treasure Valley in Idaho. Given the little work focused on environmental justice issues of Latino communities, specifically in the Treasure Valley in Idaho. This thesis aims to, firstly determine whether environmental justice issues of Latino communities are relevant to environmental and social organizations in the Treasure Valley. As part of this, I also aim to unpack why environmental issues in Latino communities are or are not relevant to local social and environmental organizations. I suspected this may be connected to the complex immigration status of Latino groups, however, I discovered that the lack of funding and research, and community awareness challenged these organizations to attend to environmental justice issues. Second, this thesis aims to bring visibility to the Latino community that is often neglected in policy and research regarding environmental justice, which has mostly focused on African-American communities. Finally, a third and related aim is to contribute to the development of a wider vision of environmental justice issues of minority groups by expanding this framework to Hispanic-Latino communities in the Treasure Valley, Idaho.

environmental justice, social movements, environmentalism