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New Maps Show Exactly How Polluted Every LA 'Hood Is

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The state's Environmental Protection Agency has put out a new, detailed list of the state's most polluted census tracts—where previous studies of polluted areas had broken the city down according to zip codes (which cover a wider area than census tracts), this "first-of-its-kind ranking" zeroes in on specific neighborhoods. And it doesn't just consider the physical presence of contaminants; it also takes into account an area's vulnerability to that pollution. In order to do that, Cal/EPA has taken into account a variety of factors, 19 in all, including health and socioeconomic variables, like rates of asthma and levels of education in a community, according to the LA Times (more on the uneven access to healthy living in LA neighborhoods here). Doing so "gives the best indication of the environmental risks faced by California's most vulnerable populations," say state officials. How does your neighborhood rate? Well, if you live in a poor or hipstery zone like Echo Park, Silver Lake, Atwater Village Downtown, South LA, you already know it's "not well." But now a branch of the agency (the Office of Environmental Health Hazard Assessment) has released a companion "screening tool," a more detailed interactive map showing the state's 8,000 census tracts in colors from red to green (the redder an area is, the worse the pollution.)

· Mapping Application of All Census Tracts and CalEnviroScreen 2.0 [OEHHA]
· LA's Poor and Hipstery Neighborhoods are Most Polluted in CA [Curbed LA]