The environmental justice movement in the U.S. is the product of the civil rights movement which gained headway in the 1960s and the environmental movement of the 1970s, which fought against environmental destruction, pollution, depletion of resources, and the extinction of species. Parallel movements internationally have brought attention to the need to protect unempowered communities worldwide from both environmental hazards and degradation. Environmental epidemiologists are shown to have an important role to play in the global struggle for environmental justice.

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