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The Green City and Social Injustice: 21 Tales from North America and Europe


J. J. Connolly Libri


The Green City and Social Injustice examines the recent urban environmental trajectory of twenty-one cities in Europe and North America over a 20 year period. It analyses the circumstances under which greening interventions can create a new set of inequalities for socially vulnerable residents while also failing to eliminate other environmental risks and impacts. Based on fieldwork in ten countries, and on analysis of core planning, policy, and activist documents and data, the book offers a critical view of the growing green planning orthodoxy in the Global North. It highlights the entanglements of this tenet with neoliberal municipal policies including budget cuts for community initiatives, long-term green spaces, and housing for the most fragile residents; and the focus on large-scale urban redevelopment and high-end real estate investment. It also discusses hopeful experiences from cities where urban greening has long been accompanied by social equity policies or managed by community groups organizing around environmental justice goals and strategies. The book examines how displacement and gentrification in the context of greening is not only physical, but also socio-cultural, creating new forms of social erasure and trauma for vulnerable residents. Its breadth and diversity allow students, scholars, and researchers to debunk the often-depoliticized branding and selling of green cities and reinsert core equity and justice issues into green city planning ? a much-needed perspective. Building from this critical view, the book also shows how cities who prioritise equity in green access, in secure housing, and in bold social policies can achieve both environmental and social gains for all.
 
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