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Eighth UMD Symposium to Address Environmental Justice and Health Disparities in the Mid-Atlantic Region and Beyond 

Annual event features action-oriented sessions on diverse environmental and climate justice topics

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Environmental Justice and Health Disparities Symposium 2022


The eighth University of Maryland Symposium on Environmental Justice & Health Disparities will take place virtually on August 11th and 12th, 2022, and in-person on Saturday, August 13th, 2022 at the University of Maryland Stamp Student Union. 

This annual event brings together public health researchers, elected leaders, environmental organizers and community advocates for timely and compelling discussions on environmental justice and health disparity issues in the DC-Maryland-Virginia (DMV), Mid-Atlantic region, and beyond. With a focus on taking action, applying science for social good and utilizing legal and policy tools to support community struggles for environmental health, participants gain inspiration, solutions, and access to critical resources to advance environmental, racial, social, and economic justice!

This year’s symposium’s theme is “Energy vs Power: Visions for the Future,” highlighting energy justice, climate change, power dynamics in environmental justice, and the use of technology in environmental justice work.

Sessions will focus on topics including: 
  • Justice 40 Initiative 
  • Building community power 
  • Environmental justice policy 
  • Energy Justice 
  • Food sovereignty
  • Climate change and disasters 
  • Community Science
  • Environmental justice mapping tools
  • Climate justice, law, and policy 
  • CAFOs and rural community health 
  • Air quality monitoring
  • Just and clean energy transitions
  • Global environmental justice 
  • Legislative Initiatives
  • Funding and sustaining the EJ movement

And much more! View the 2022 Agenda.

Organizations represented in the symposium sessions include: 

US Environmental Protection Agency, Department of Energy, Mid-Atlantic Justice Coalition, US Dept. of Health and Human Services, Aclima, Namati, National Wildlife Federation, Kresge Foundation, Deep South Center for Environmental Justice, WE ACT for Environmental Justice, Just Transition Alliance, Hip Hop Caucus, Appalachian Voices, Alliance to Save Energy and many more! 

Keynote and plenary speakers include: 
  • Dr. Sacoby Wilson, associate professor, University of Maryland School of Public Health, director, Community Engagement, Environmental Justice and Health
  • Dr. Jalonne White-Newsome, Senior Director for Environmental Justice, Council on Environmental Quality 
  • Dr Sharunda Buchanan, Interim Director, Office of Environmental Justice and Senior Advisor for Climate Change and Health Equity, Office of the Assistant Secretary for Health (OASH) and Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS) 
  • Dr. Robert Bullard, Director, Robert D. Bullard Center for Environmental and Climate Justice, Distinguished Professor of Urban Planning and Environmental Policy, Texas Southern University 
  • Dr. Beverly Wright, Deep South Center for Environmental Justice
  • Charles Lee, Senior Policy Advisor, Office of Environmental Justice at the Environmental Protection Agency
  • Dr. Benjamin Chavis Jr., President, National Newspaper Publishers Association, Civil Rights Leader
  • Dolly Burwell, Warren County, NC, a Mother of the Environmental Justice Movement
  • Reverend Lennox Yearwood Jr.. President and CEO, Hip Hop Caucus


August 11-13, 2022


Virtually (8/11-12) and at the University of Maryland’s Stamp Student Union (8/13) 

Media: Members of the press are welcome to attend and cover the event. Interviews with panelists and speakers can be arranged. Contact Kelly Blake, or 443-851-0272.

Environmental Justice and Health Disparities Symposium Background: 

First held in 2012, the UMD EJ Symposium was established by Dr. Sacoby Wilson, Professor in the School of Public Health, and Director, Community Engagement, Environmental Justice and Health (CEEJH).

Dr. Wilson’s expertise in environmental health science and his relentless advocacy on behalf of communities impacted by environmental injustices has made him an influential leader in the environmental justice movement and a natural convener of this important event.  

The Sierra Club will present Dr. Wilson with the Robert Bullard Environmental Justice Award at the symposium on August 13 in recognition of his outstanding leadership and contributions to the environmental justice movement. Read more about this award [add link to news release]

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