This article analyzes the EPA within the broader history of federally-sponsored residential segregation, as well as the criminalization of and disinvestment from urban areas contemporaneous with the agency’s founding. It offers a detailed analysis of EPA’s first decade of recalcitrance regarding its own obligations under Title VI of the 1964 Civil Rights Act and Title VII of the 1968 Fair Housing Act. The EPA developed a pattern of responding to scrutiny by rearranging its internal office structure and launching new initiatives tangential to the substantive issues of civil rights. Through this detailed interpretation, the article demonstrates how EPA’s first ten years were crucial in laying the groundwork for subsequent decades of inaction on racial residential segregation, one of the primary causes of ill health in the United States. Ultimately the article argues that EPA's early paternalism and intransigence furthered the structural racism at the heart of the U.S. national project, and mitigated against the agency taking substantive action on the key demands of environmental justice voiced by activists in the 1990s.
Thomson, Jennifer. "Civil Rights Enforcement and Fair Housing at the Environmental Protection Agency." (2021) : 345-352.