The environmental justice resource guide compiles relevant and current resources related to supporting and fostering environmental, economic, and health prosperity in rural communities.
Rural Information Center
The Rural Information Center (RIC) provides services for rural communities, local officials, organizations, businesses and rural citizens working to maintain the vitality of America's rural areas.
"More than 95% of U.S. land area is classified as rural, but is home to just 19% of the population. Rural America’s importance to the country’s economic and social well-being is disproportionate to its population, as rural areas provide natural resources that much of the rest of the United States depends on for food, energy, water, forests, recreation, national character, and quality of life. Rural economic foundations and community cohesion are intricately linked to these natural systems, which are inherently vulnerable to climate change. Urban areas that depend on goods and services from rural areas will also be affected by climate change driven impacts across the countryside." (National Climate Assessment, 2014. U.S. Global Change Research Group)
Rural Impacts (U.S. Climate Resilience Toolkit)
"Rural communities have long made their livelihoods from farming and fishing. Now, this reliance on the natural environment renders these communities inherently vulnerable to climate change..."
Rural Communities (Fourth National Climate Assessment, U.S. Global Change Research Program)
"Rural communities are highly dependent upon natural resources that are affected by climate change. These communities also face particular obstacles in responding to climate change that increase their vulnerability to its impacts..."
USDA Climate Change Science Plan
The United States Department of Agriculture Strategic Plan (FY 2010-2015; USDA) calls for the USDA “to expand economic opportunity through innovation, helping rural America thrive; to promote agriculture production sustainability that better nourishes Americans while also helping to feed others throughout the world; and to preserve and conserve our Nation’s natural resources through restored forests, improved watersheds, and healthy private working lands.” Climate change has the potential to disrupt USDA efforts to meet these core obligations and responsibilities to the Nation.