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The Legacy of Redlining in Oakland, CA

Author(s): Marci Cole Ekberg

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The issues of redlining and environmental justice will be introduced and used as a framework for a number of topics in the third part of the semester in a non-majors Environmental Science course.


I use case studies to frame the many topics students explore in my non-majors Environmental Science class. Over the course of the semester, we explore three different overarching, real-world case studies. Each case study encompasses a series of topics. The students learn about each of these topics and how they fit in with the case study. At the end of each section, we review all the parts of the case study, develop potential solutions to the issue, and create a list of action items. 

Here, I use the issues of historic redlining and environmental justice as frameworks for the topics of environmental risk and health, waste management, economics, sustainable development and nonrenewable and renewable energy. At every step, we discuss how redlining relates to each topic. 

I use live lectures, breakout room discussions, textbook readings, online group discussions, and additional web articles and online videos. 

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