Home » Environmental Justice Organizations Chicago: Fighting for a Cleaner and Fairer City

Environmental Justice Organizations Chicago: Fighting for a Cleaner and Fairer City

Environmental Justice Organizations Chicago
Environmental Justice Organizations Chicago | photo courtesy | EJOC Guide

Chicago, a city renowned for its dynamic culture, diverse communities, and iconic architecture, is also grappling with the detrimental effects of environmental racism.

In low-income and minority neighborhoods, residents face disproportionate exposure to pollution, health hazards, and environmental degradation.

Fortunately, a multitude of environmental justice organizations in Chicago are actively working to address these issues.

Led by dedicated grassroots activists, community leaders, and environmental experts, these organizations strive for a cleaner and fairer city for all.

This article delves into some of the most impactful environmental justice initiatives in Chicago.

Chicago Environmental Justice Network (CEJN)

The Chicago Environmental Justice Network (CEJN) is a coalition of neighborhood-based, frontline environmental justice organizations operating throughout the Chicago metropolitan area.

Predominantly led by women of color, CEJN focuses on communities experiencing severe environmental and health disparities due to their proximity to pollution sources.

CEJN’s mission is to unite communities, amplify their voices, and advocate for their rights.

Notable achievements include the Illinois Environmental law Act, which enhances community participation and transparency in the industrial permitting process, and the successful opposition to the General Iron permit, preventing additional toxic emissions and noise on the Southeast Side.


  1. Why Environmental Justice Organizations in Los Angeles are Crucial for a Sustainable Future
  2. The A. Donald McEachin Environmental Justice For All Act: Combating Environmental Injustice in the US
  3. Building Equity and Alignment for Environmental Justice: How Celebrities Can Make a Difference

Little Village Environmental Justice Organization (LVEJO)

As a founding member of CEJN, the Little Village Environmental law Organization (LVEJO) is a leading force in addressing environmental injustices in the predominantly Latino Little Village neighborhood.

LVEJO’s vision revolves around achieving self-determination by organizing with the community’s youth and families.

Key accomplishments include the successful closure of the Crawford and Fisk coal plants, significantly improving air quality, and increasing life expectancy.

Additionally, LVEJO played a crucial role in the development of La Villita Park, a 23-acre green space on the former site of the Celotex asphalt factory, providing recreational opportunities and promoting environmental education and urban agriculture.

Environmental Law & Policy Center (ELPC)

The Environmental Law & Policy Center (ELPC) is a public-interest environmental legal advocacy and eco-business innovation organization operating in the Midwest, including Chicago.

ELPC’s mission is to achieve a healthy environment, a clean energy future, and an improved quality of life for Midwest residents.

ELPC utilizes a strategic combination of legal, policy, and economic tools to protect the environment and promote sustainability.

The organization concentrates on important issues like environmental law, healthy communities, clean water and natural resources, clean energy and climate change, and clean communities.


For millions of people in Chicago and beyond, environmental law is a critical issue.

The remarkable efforts of these organizations challenge the status quo, hold the powerful accountable, and catalyze positive change in their communities.

These dedicated advocates deserve our support and recognition for their ongoing work in creating a cleaner and fairer city for all.

Add Comment

Click here to post a comment