Climate XChange, October 15, 2021, East Boston V. Eversource Substation: An Ongoing Fight for Justice
In the United States, gentrification and the displacement of long-time residents has been most intense in the largest cities. The National Community Reinvestment Coalition (NCRC) notes that Black and Hispanic U.S. residents were impacted the most by gentrification, affecting at least 135,000 people in 2019. More recently, NCRC ranked Boston as the third most gentrified city in the U.S. with 21.3 percent of neighborhoods being gentrified from 2013 – 2017.
Eversource plans to build a substation in East Boston, an area where 64 percent of community members are people of color and 54 percent of the community are immigrants.
For locals and activists, the project highlights a classic case of environmental injustice, in which a company places an industrialized project in often low- to mid-income communities or Black, Indigenous, or people of color (BIPOC) communities. Many residents have voiced their concern of the project further contributing to the growing burden of pollution in an already heavily industrialized area.