The broad long-term objective of the Southern California Environmental Health Project (the SCEH Project) is to build upon a community-based strategy for reducing worker and community exposures to environmental pollutants among low income communities of color throughout the greater Los Angeles regions. Efforts will be focused on areas where residential communities are found in close proximity to major industrial and other pollutant sources, especially along Los Angeles' heavily industrialized Alameda Corridor. Specific attention will be paid to assessing and addressing the cumulative health risks arising from exposure to multiple toxic emissions. The SCEH Project embodies a joint effort by community representatives, local health care providers, and university researchers.
The specific aims of this partnership to: gather and analyze existing environmental data to characterize environmental health risks in these communities and to identify possible solutions to these problems; educate community members and local health care providers on the health effects of pollutants; and promote the adoption of cost-effective pollution prevention measures for local environmental (including industrial) sources of key environmental pollutants. Pollution prevention will be addressed at both the regulatory level, with entities such as the South Coast Air Quality Management District (SCAQMD), and on a voluntary basis with local industries, focusing on technology and pollution prevention practices readily adaptable by small businesses. This project builds upon our previously funded Southeast Environmental Health Project (the SELA Project) funded through NIEHS' Community Partnership for Environmental Justice grant in 1994. The SCEH Project seeks to broaden the impact area of the SELA Project and add the additional tools of community-based air sampling and air dispersion modeling to quantify environmental health risks and identify key pollution prevention opportunities with industries in the region.