William & Mary Environmental Law and Policy Review


Brett M. Paben


Government decisions made at the local and state level are those that most often directly affect communities. Participatory and procedural protections under state and local, rather than federal law, therefore, largely control the ability of grassroots environmental justice advocates to shape government decisions important to their communities. Thus, significant disparities in the standards of procedural justice differ not only by which state an environmental justice community happens to be located in, but also by the type of local government with authority over that community. Frequently, this diminishes the empowerment efforts of communities found in unincorporated areas. The community found in Tallevast, Florida, is one such example of a community whose dedication and struggles to achieve environmental justice have often been thwarted by deficient state and local government procedural protections.