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The environmental costs of prisons



The cruel and inhumane conditions that many prison inmates live in have been well documented. On this edition of Your Call, we'll discuss environmental factors that can make prison even more difficult, and in some cases, deadly.

Polluted land and water affects inmates, guards, local residents as well as the local land, flora and fauna. Links are being made between the traditional environmental movement, and advocates for prisoners. These groups are working together to strategize on blocking or shutting down prisons in toxic locations, and the alliance is working on developing new legal strategies.


Panagioti Tsolkas, co-founder of the Prison Ecology Project

Professor David Pellow, director of the Global Environmental Justice Project at UC Santa Barbara

Richard Mosley, organizer with the Fayette Health Justice Campaign and former inmate at SCI Fayette

Web Resources:

Prison Ecology Project

What is Critical Environmental Justice? by David Pellow

America's Toxic Prisons: The Environmental Injustices of Mass Incarceration

Abolitionist Law Center

Fayette Health Justice Campaign

California Prison Moratorium Project


Rose Aguilar has been the host of Your Call since 2006. She became a regular Friday media roundtable guest in 2001.