Who: A collection of young environmental and public health professionals, researchers, scholars and activists, who were interested in highlighting how race and more specifically racism effects and continually impacts our planetary and human health.

What: A project displaying feedback loops that indicate the self-perpetuating cycles of how racism negatively impacts the environmental and public health sectors. A feedback loop is a design tool used to show how the result of a process perpetuates that same process (positive feedback) or inhibits it (negative feedback). In this case, racism is a trigger for many positive feedback loops, as the impacts of racism constantly amplify the effects on the system. Although the impacts of the system are negative (bad) for society and the planet, the word positive denotes the idea that the system is perpetuated or amplified, rather than inhibited, and is not indicative of “good vs. bad.”

Why: We recognize that the climate crisis, environmentalism, public health and the fight for racial justice and anti-racist policies are inextricably linked. In the wake of two major current events, COVID-19 and the ongoing worldwide movement for social justice, these links became even more apparent. The United States in particular faces reprehensible (yet, reversible) effects from our history and present due to prioritization of capitalism, wealth, and preserving white supremacy. There exists numerous amounts of research and resources to support this concept. We see the Feedback Project as an aggregation and illustration of how these systems impact and perpetuate one another. We also hope to bring attention to points of intervention from grassroots groups and communities as well as activists, entrepreneurs, and thinkers. We hope this can be a useful tool to educate fellow allies, and highlight importances of disrupting current systems of oppression in our fields.

Further Why: We aim for this to be an interactive and inclusive tool, for community members to be able to add their experiences and feedback to each loop. We are aware there may be missing pieces in these loops and experiences as well that we hope to incorporate in the future. Please contact us if you would like to contribute.

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