This article examines how clean air advocates in the San Joaquin Valley amplified a collective action frame of air pollution as a public health crisis. This frame serves to mobilize communities and attribute responsibility to relevant authorities while countering the San Joaquin Valley Air District’s narrative that places blame on the public and unalterable aspects of the physical environment, characterizing the problem as largely unchangeable. Core questions are: How did advocates facilitate frame construction and sustain resonance across time and place? How did this frame compel urgent action, including representational change in the Valley Air District Governing Board through the adoption of Senate Bill 719? Findings show that advocates counter the San Joaquin Valley Air District’s frame by shifting the focus on the negative impacts to public health and quality of life, particularly in disproportionately impacted environmental justice communities. Building and leveraging a resonant frame required strategic “stretch” in capacity while cultivating collective identity and solidarity. Within the Valley Air District, the change in governing board composition has measurably impacted dialog and provided a more welcoming reception of public participation at meetings, with the doctor and scientist appointees providing critical perspectives and contributing to subtle shifts in the agency’s dominant messaging and decision making. While a public health frame has taken shape around air pollution in the San Joaquin Valley, these efforts are not complete or without ongoing strain.

KEY MESSAGE

By engaging with this case, readers will gain insights into collective action frames as well as how San Joaquin Valley advocates have successfully reframed air pollution as a public health crisis and an environmental injustice.

INTRODUCTION

The San Joaquin Valley is one of the poorest and most polluted regions in the United States, and while people’s health markedly suffers, efforts to clean the air are hard-fought in this polarized, conservative political climate. The entrenched anti-regulation, conservative and libertarian leaning political dynamics, and the immense physical size of the San Joaquin Valley mandate physical and philosophical “stretch.” To enact solutions to the root causes, movements must build solidarity and must work across “forgotten places” to create “material and ideological linkages” across urban and rural places and “subaltern” peoples [1, 2]. Working geographically across local, regional, statewide, and national geopolitical scales as well as across ideological divides inevitably causes friction along the path to progress. Tipping the scales of justice in favor of communities that are disproportionately impacted by outdoor air pollution such as those in California’s San Joaquin Valley (the Valley) requires advocates to innovate organizing strategies and deftly maneuver conflict-ridden relationships with regulatory authorities, yielding important insights for scholars and practitioners who are interested in how social movements construct and sustain collective action frames.

Social movements construct narratives that create solidarity and shared identity, attribute responsibility, and inspire action. Often people need convincing narratives that motivate people and catalyze movement building, a “collective action frame” [3]. Frames are interpretive schemata embedded in objects, events, experiences, and sequences of action [4]. Competing claims makers identify and frame social problems through interpretive processes [5]. Framing is integral to movement building, through which individual identities converge to create shared symbols and meanings. Thus, generating, implementing, and modifying frames are critical components of movement building. Along with constructing identity and solidarity across physical and social spaces, shared narratives frame problems and motivate actions. Collective action frames result from negotiations over the shared meaning and serve to both punctuate the problem and the delineate attribution of the root causes [57]. Framing processes are simultaneously and unavoidably influenced by the sociopolitical context in which they occur [6].

In California, local efforts to clean the air from stationary sources of pollution, such as factories and refineries, are the responsibility of regional air districts and their governing boards, with most mobile sources regulated by the state. This case study focused on the regional air authorities at the San Joaquin Valley Air District (Valley Air District). The Valley Air District’s messaging emphasizes “making one change” in their lives such as riding bikes instead of driving. At public meetings, air district staffs often start presentations by framing the problem as largely shaped by the basin’s physical geography: its bowl-like shape, meteorological factors like temperature inversions and airflows, including air pollution that drifts into the region from other places. Meanwhile, Valley Air District Governing Board members have publicly uttered explanations like “If the Valley is this polluted, it’s because God intended it to be that way.” These framing attributes blame on the public and unalterable aspects of the physical environment, characterizing the problem as largely unchangeable.

In the early 2000s, clean air advocates from a broad range of backgrounds coalesced into the Central Valley Air Quality Coalition (CVAQ), organizing around the public health crisis caused by outdoor air pollution in the San Joaquin Valley. The CVAQ’s mission represents its overall purpose and goals: “[t]o work toward awareness, act as a watchdog, advocate for policy, and mobilize communities to create clean air in the San Joaquin Valley. To ensure that all communities, of all races, cultures, class or creed, have the opportunity to be involved in the policy development and regulatory processes improving regional health” ([8], about us, para. 2). This assertion of the rights of all to participate in decision-making processes aligns with the environmental justice (EJ) movements’ focus on participation and benefits to communities, touching on both distributive and procedural justice. As this case study details, CVAQ facilitated iterative and reciprocal processes leading to the creation of a collective action frame of air pollution as a public health crisis, highlighting how EJ communities are most impacted and countering the dominant messaging of the Valley Air District. The adoption of Senate Bill (SB) 719 was a major achievement of CVAQ, which added public health and scientific expertise to the Valley Air District’s Governing Board. Importantly, CVAQ engaged myriad forms of expertise to craft and sustain this public health frame and compelled people to action, including by listening to people’s stories across the region, mobilizing around common narratives, and focusing on the largest sources of air pollution within the regulatory authority of the San Joaquin Valley Air Pollution Control District. Developing and maintaining a resonant frame provides hope that clean air is possible for the San Joaquin Valley while holding the air district accountable for the sources it regulates.

Multi-scalar, collaborative work is required to navigate the complex regulatory structures governing outdoor air quality and the sociopolitical context of the San Joaquin Valley. Though in many physical and political ways the San Joaquin Valley is fragmented, advocates continually engaged with the limited levels of environmental governance, the daunting mesh of institutional structures, and the deeply rooted sociopolitical barriers toward enactment of their dynamic visions of EJ. Expanding on the idea of framing, EJ scholar Hilda Kurtz [9] has noted that the “scale frames” and “counter scale frames” activists have mobilized to hold accountable government agencies that operate at different scales than the immediate injustice is being experienced at, demonstrating a sociopolitical sophistication sensitive to the interconnections between local and global physical, socioeconomic, and political scales. Clean air advocates in the Valley have worked in coalition across ideological and geographical expanses to increase the representation of public health perspectives through collaborative efforts and within existing governmental structures in the face of an often-adversarial sociopolitical climate.

Some scholars have argued that, within the Valley, the public is poorly informed, not engaged in advancing clean air, and lacking in the scientific capacity to understand the challenges completely [10]. Some scholars contended that increased collaboration is the catalyst needed to bring about change in the San Joaquin Valley [11]. Yet, the conservative sociopolitical climate coupled with economic domination of the region by polluting industries often means that power differentials obstruct productive dialog, at times leaving litigation as the only remaining platform for negotiation. At the same time, advocates have made critical contributions to collaborative efforts and have raised serious concerns about disparate exposure to air pollution by EJ communities. Through an innovative collaboration of mainstream environmental, public health, community, medical, and EJ advocates, the CVAQ has played a leading role in raising awareness about the public health problems caused by the outdoor air pollution in California’s San Joaquin Valley. In this case study, key questions are: How did CVAQ facilitate frame construction of air pollution as a public health crisis? How did advocates communicate this narrative to the broader public and sustain its resonance across time and place? How did this collective action frame contributes to actions such as the passage of SB 719, and did its adoption shift the Valley Air District’s dominant framing?

CASE STUDY BACKGROUND

The San Joaquin Valley (the Valley) consists of eight counties, running from north to south: San Joaquin, Stanislaus, Merced, Madera, Fresno, Kings, Tulare, and Kern. In total, the Valley encompasses 27,000 square miles, measuring 250 miles from north to south [12]. The Valley is “the most productive agricultural region in the world, producing over 250 crops” [13]. To achieve this feat, the physical environment of the San Joaquin Valley has been radically altered, with attendant impacts on the quality of life in the region. According to the United States Geological Survey, mining groundwater for agriculture has led to the Valley is one of the single largest alterations of the land surface attributable to humankind ([14], p. 22). The Valley is home to several of the most agriculturally productive counties in the United States [15], grossing more than US$25 billion annually [16]. This agricultural abundance is juxtaposed with some of the state’s highest rates of food insecurity [17]. These paradoxes have led some to describe the region as “poverty amidst prosperity” [18]. As has been well documented, the prominent economic status of the region is built around the exploitation of an inexpensive, and often socio-politically isolated, immigrant farm labor population [1921]. The San Joaquin Valley is “majority-minority,” with Latinos as the predominant population [22, 23]. Yet Latinos and other vulnerable populations suffer well-documented, disparate exposure to health and environmental hazards [24, 25]. The Valley is culturally rich, with more than 70 different ethnicities and 105 languages spoken among its population of approximately 4 million people.

The San Joaquin Valley’s economy is dominated by agricultural and other heavy industries. The Valley is also the site of the major transportation corridors of Interstate 5 and Highway 99, which in combination with cheap land and labor, and has led to a proliferation of distribution centers, some for stores that do not operate within the region itself. The region still contains vast open spaces, and communities have generally developed in a sprawling pattern. The existing tax base for cities and counties relies heavily on extractive and exploitative industries, particularly real estate developers as well as the oil industry and industrialized agricultural. Sitting over the Monterey Shale deposit, one of the largest oil reserves in the United States, the southern portion of the Valley hosts major oil and gas extraction and production sites. Industrialized agriculture, heavy industries like oil extraction and processing, freight traversing these transportation arteries, and sprawling land-use patterns are major contributors to air pollution.

The Valley suffers from unhealthy levels of particulate matter (PM) and ozone. PM generally occurs in the fall and winter seasons in the Valley due to the activities like orchard harvesting and open agricultural burning, though the increasing severity and intensity of wildfires linked to climate change mean the region is experiencing more frequent, prolonged, and cumulative exposure to PM. The finer the particle, the greater the health risk; the smallest particles can penetrate the lining of the lungs, entering the bloodstream, and contributing to cardiovascular issues like heart attack and stroke. Ground-level ozone forms when heat from sunlight cooks volatile organic compounds from sources like dairies, tailpipes, and pesticides, generally occurring in the spring and summer in the San Joaquin Valley. Ozone is a corrosive gas, with chronic exposure essentially burning the lungs and exacerbating respiratory problems like asthma and bronchitis. Current research does not adequately address the impacts of exposure to multiple air pollutants for prolonged periods, or the potential synergistic effects of pollutants combining. As discussed, research shows that communities of color and lower incomes are often disproportionately impacted by air pollution, resulting in environmental injustice in the San Joaquin Valley.

Politicians in the Valley, as elsewhere, share close affiliations with the region’s primary economic drivers. Elected officials frequently take contributions from these major players [26, 27] and as such are beholden to those interests, a major obstacle in seeking accountability and reform. People in the Valley are assaulted physically, socially, and economically by this harsh landscape, bearing the costs to health and quality of life caused by extraction and production while benefiting little, if at all, from the abundant resources extracted. According to the 2008 analysis, air pollution costs the San Joaquin Valley US$6 billion annually, or about US$1,600 per person per year, due to impacts such as premature deaths, missed school and workdays, and health care costs [28]. The Valley has often been likened to Appalachia, with its concentrated poverty and social and environmental ills [29].

Air pollution in the San Joaquin Valley has been pervasive over the last several decades, and so has activism for public health and EJ. This work began at least as early as the campaigns of Cesar Chavez and the United Farm Workers (UFW), the union renowned for setting a precedent as the first organization to successfully unionize farmworkers. The UFW actively incorporated efforts to protect both workers and community members from pesticides into their organizing campaigns [2, 30]. Connected to some of these and other earlier strands of activism, in the early 2000s a new coalition began to coalesce around air pollution in the San Joaquin Valley, which ultimately came to be called the CVAQ.

The San Joaquin Valley Air Pollution Control District represents a unification of eight county-level air pollution control entities that existed until legislation passed in 1992. Unification of these separate entities was meant to generate more holistic, basin-wide approaches to air pollution. Under the Federal Clean Air Act, the Valley Air District is charged with developing plans and implementing emission control measures that “primarily affect stationary sources such as factories and plants” [31]. The Air District is overseen by an Executive Director/Air Pollution Control Officer, who supervises several hundred staff. The Director reports to the Air District’s ultimate authorities, its Governing Board. The Governing Board has the final say in approving major decisions regarding air pollution reductions and incentive funding. Currently, the Board is made up of 15 members: 8 county supervisors, 1 from each of the Valley’s counties, that are “selected by their respective county Boards of Supervisors,” along with “5 City Council members selected by the cities within the District, and 2 public members appointed by the Governor” [32]. This governance structure continues to evolve as clean air advocates raising public health and EJ concerns, as discussed in this article.

Methods before the passage of this bill in 2007, the San Joaquin Valley Air Pollution Control District’s Governing Board was composed of 11 members, 1 member from the Board of Supervisors in each of the Valley’s eight counties, and 3 members appointed from city councils across the region that rotate between small, medium, and large cities and from the northern, central, and southern counties. The Governing Board oversees the Air Pollution Control Officer/Executive Director and must review and approve all plans and rules adopted by the Valley Air District. SB 719: Air District Board Reform (2007) added seats for representatives from city councils in the Valley and two appointees by the governor, a practicing physician and a scientist with expertise in air pollution. The CVAQ ran a campaign to pass SB 719 from approximately 2003 until its adoption in 2007; the bill was implemented at the Air District in 2008. The timeframe for this research spans from 2003 through 2015, to cover the build-up of the campaign as well as several years post-adoption and implementation.

To shed light on the complex negotiations during the campaign for SB 719 and its subsequent implementation, this study paired archival analysis of publicly available data with semi-structured interviews. The archival review encompassed more than 30 websites and newspaper articles. Semi-structured interviews were conducted with nine advocates affiliated with the CVAQ coalition from various organizational and philosophical backgrounds, referred to herein as “advocates.” Five semi-structured interviews were conducted with staff and decision-makers at air quality regulatory agencies, which are referred to as “air quality authorities” or “authorities.” Few interviews were conducted with authorities because they yield more publicly available data in terms of official reports, meeting minutes, press releases, and so on. In addition, these respondents were more difficult to procure interviews due to a range of factors, including the inaccessibility of decision-makers and top-down control of messaging. For example, one mid-level authority explicitly declined an interview out of fear of reprisal. More than a dozen informal interviews on the general topics of this research were conducted for data collection with people within the broader environmental movement and/or environmental regulatory structure as well as with non-profit funders.

CASE EXAMINATION: SB 719 (2007, MACHADO)

One of the key successes of CVAQ has been in sustaining a collective action frame of air pollution as a public health crisis in the San Joaquin Valley that attributes accountability to major sources of pollution and existing regulatory structures, including the San Joaquin Valley Air Pollution Control District. Innovative strategies harnessed by the CVAQ members include stretching geographically across the region and state as well as ideologically by coordinating groups from grassroots, EJ, and mainstream environmental backgrounds to cultivate a resonant collective action frame and build the movement for clean air. The successful passage of SB 719 was fomented by years of dedicated campaigning that required building the coalition’s diverse network of spokespeople across the region and state, and by regularly engaging the public in decision-making processes that often inequitably advantage voices from polluting industries.

In the early 2000s, the CVAQ’s founders held forums across the region and presented an overview of the primary causes of air pollution in the San Joaquin Valley and potential solutions. They heard similar stories every place they went, of how air pollution was adversely impacting people’s health and quality of life, from young children with severe asthma to premature deaths from cardiac arrest or strokes during episodes of the high level of air pollution. Building a collective action frame was thus an iterative process, where organizers reflected the public with the stories that they have heard across the region. As people recognized the commonalities in their stories and learned that the regional air district was largely beholden to polluting industries, many were compelled to act.

Doctors and respiratory therapists were taking note of increased symptoms in patients on days with high levels of air pollution, and research further validated those experiences. Around this time, a research symposium bringing experts together from across the country was coordinated by advocates to focus more attention on local problems and assess potential solutions. A Valley Air District authority noted in their interview that this event positioned advocates as key collaborators on the science of air pollution, and not just the outside agitators they are sometimes cast as. Health experts have a critical role to play as collaborators with advocates and regulators in identifying the root causes, raising awareness, and advocating for actions to reduce the dangers and serious health impacts of chronic and cumulative air pollution exposure.

The media is also a crucial avenue for sharing information with a wide audience, inspiring hope, and sustaining the collective action frame of air pollution as a public health crisis. One long-time advocate described how, early on, coalition members put in a lot of work engaging with reporters, describing how “during the battles that we were having with the Valley Air District, a local newspaper, the Fresno Bee responded with ‘The Last Gasp,’ [published in 2002] their biggest report that became award-winning, and that helped to spark up the courage” for more proactive state legislation, including what’s referred to as the SB 700 series which, for the first time, held agriculture accountable for emissions from practices like open burning. During this timeframe, environmental legislation in California generally faced strong opposition from conservative Democrats and Republicans, many of them from inland regions such as the San Joaquin Valley. Amplifying the connections between public health impacts and air pollution influenced the media and the public, resulting in pressure on and action from decision-makers.

One advocate explained that around the same time that CVAQ’s early organizing efforts were underway, the idea for SB 719 began with some research into the Valley Air District’s creation and unification into a regional body, as well as the laws and policies that give the agency its mandate. As the advocate described, working with the Valley Air District’s Governing Board over time revealed that decision-makers were sticking within their legal mandates and sorely lacked “the advice of somebody from the health care sector.” A respondent who has served in one of the appointed positions shared that, despite sometimes deep ideological and political differences, his colleagues on the board often welcomed and sought out his public health expertise.

Bringing attention and addressing the public health impacts of the Valley’s severe air pollution problems brought coalescence to the coalition’s membership working from a range of backgrounds, including public health, unions, environmental, and EJ as well as parent, youth groups, and other concerned community members. Building such a broad and diverse network is not a small task in as vast a region as the San Joaquin Valley and given the amount of variance in ideological approaches among members, yet this diversity has been integral to sustaining a resonant collective action frame. As one advocate put it, “I don’t think I could have done anything . . . without having all the expertise, all the legal organizations, the grassroots organizations, the community organizing organizations, the faith based organizations . . . these really integral pieces of the puzzle.” A respondent affiliated with the Valley Air District commented on the important perspectives of the coalition provided by bringing local community members into conversations that usually took place in a boardroom dominated by agency staff and industry representatives. Engaging various experts in air pollution governance, particularly people from impacted communities who are experts in their own experiences, requires the Valley Air District to respond to claims that counter their dominant framing of air pollution as inevitable, the responsibility of individuals, and largely out of their control. Unfortunately, these decision-making processes are often inaccessible and overly technical, involving lengthy meetings usually held during the day. Despite these and other challenges, advocates provide a critical link facilitating public engagement by inspiring hope for clean air, attributing responsibility to the appropriate authorities, and mobilizing for action through collective action frames.

A unique strength of coalition organizing noted by respondents was the capacity to, for the most part, coordinate groups that have some significant differences in their ideological approaches given the mix of public health, EJ, mainstream environmental, faith-based, and other types of organizations. Just one example of this organizational diversity, as well as the strong and strident political opposition faced, is evidenced in the official list of supporters and those opposed to SB 719. Supporters range from national, well-funded, mainstream environmental organizations like the Natural Resources Defense Council alongside local, grassroots, mostly volunteer operations with strong EJ roots like the Grayson Neighborhood Council. Opponents include powerful industry groups such as the Nisei Farmers League and large governmental entities such as the California Association of Counties (see Appendix for the full list of supporters and opponents). To garner this broad-based support and counter these well-resourced opponents represents the immense strategic capacity leveraged by CVAQ to create shared identity and narratives across different places and ideologies.

CVAQ sustains this collective action frame through the methods articulated in its mission: by working toward awareness, acting as a watchdog, advocating for policies, and mobilizing communities. One cornerstone of CVAQ’s efforts that continue today and originated in the campaign for SB 719 involves coordinating an annual Clean Air Action Day, where community members from throughout the San Joaquin Valley converge on the state capitol to share their stories of negative impacts to health and quality of life. Another key method of engagement and mobilizing involves presenting Air Pollution 101 to a wide range of audiences, which covers causes, health impacts, and how to protect yourself and your community, as well as some solutions to the Valley’s air pollution problems. Clean Air Action Day and Air Pollution 101 presentations are just a few examples of the ongoing efforts to cultivate and amplify the collective action frame of air pollution as a public health crisis in the San Joaquin Valley.

While sustaining the movement for clean air in the San Joaquin Valley is a long, ongoing struggle, many advocates expressed pride in successes such as SB 719 that help build a groundswell of public awareness and engagement with air pollution issues and related administrative, legal, and political processes. Several advocates and one authority felt that having the two appointees on the board created a “more welcoming environment” and, where previously public or environmental commenters might have been “met by silence” at the Governing Board, the appointees tended to “be more receptive and responsive to engaging with members of the public.” Some respondents suggested that a potential solution to the public health crisis caused by air pollution in the Valley might warrant an overhaul of the Valley Air District’s Governing Board to all appointees and no elected officials, to ensure greater accountability to public health and minimize political influences. As one long-time advocate noted in response to whether a focus on institutional change or systemic disruption is more effective, “We don’t have the luxury of choosing. We have to try it all, from grassroots to grasstops.” As demonstrated by this case study, the collective action frame of San Joaquin Valley air pollution as a public health crisis mobilized the grassroots to hold the grasstops accountable for clearing the air. Overall, respondents spoke to a growing voice in venues such as Valley Air District Governing Board meetings and the media for a public health approach to air pollution, as well as increasing public awareness and engagement with the complexities of the problem.

CONCLUSIONS

This research article shows that CVAQ built a collective action frame around the public health crisis caused by air pollution through various methods. Sustaining a resonant collective action frame relied on tapping messengers from various backgrounds, from mothers with asthmatic children to the medical professionals who treat them, to the lawyers familiar with legal mandates in air quality regulations. Creating a shared narrative built solidarity and collective identity while attributing responsibility to major polluters and air authorities and proving that improvements are not only possible but also urgently necessary. SB 719’s passage and implementation are important steps toward shifting the dominant narrative toward a collective action frame centered on public health. Such a major legislative victory simultaneously energized the public and galvanized a social movement around air pollution as a public health crisis, proving that organizing diverse stakeholders for clean air in the Valley creates significant changes. This article documents how, despite the challenges of the San Joaquin Valley’s physical and political situation, clean air advocates have raised awareness of the public health impacts of air pollution and influenced decision making through adding health and scientific expertise to the regional air district’s governing board. This multi-year policy effort is just one small slice of the many tactics that clean air advocates are utilizing to inspire public action, from the grassroots to the grasstops and across local, regional, and statewide scales.

Its diverse set of engaged stakeholders is one of the CVAQ’s strengths. The broad range of supporters for the passage of SB 719 was mentioned as a key factor in sustaining the 5-year effort. Community members shared personal stories; doctors and respiratory therapists spoke the struggles of their patients’ facing from air pollution; and lawyers and policy experts spoke the need for improved regulatory oversight and enforcement. While sustaining this level of focus over time was resource-intensive, approaching air pollution from a public health perspective and engaging myriad experts, as well as building allies in key districts across the state, garnered the additional support needed to pass the legislation and propel messages of public health into influential social structures like the media and the Valley Air District Governing Board. While a public health frame has taken shape around air pollution, this work is not complete or without ongoing strain. While a thorough examination of these constraints is beyond the scope of this article, continually countering the well-resourced public relations campaigns of the Valley Air District and polluting industries to focus attribution on physical geography and individual choices is surely a central challenge. For severely impacted and socio-politically disenfranchised populations in places like the San Joaquin Valley, choosing between public engagement, regulatory reform, or systemic transformation cannot be afforded; rather, every existing path must be pursued to create clean air and address environmental injustices.

CASE STUDY QUESTIONS

  1. What is a collective action frame? Why are collective action frames important for social movements?

  2. What is the dominant frame used by the San Joaquin Valley Air District and polluting industries regarding causes of and responsibility for air pollution?

  3. Discuss some of the ways clean air advocates built and sustained a frame around pollution in the San Joaquin Valley as a public health crisis.

  4. How did adding a doctor and scientist to the Valley Air District Governing Board contribute to framing air pollution as a public health crisis?

I thank my doctoral dissertation committee, Dr. Jonathan London, Dr. Donna Hardina, and Dr. Julie Sze for their support. My deepest gratitude to the respondents who were interviewed for this research, and to the advocates who are working to sustain movements for clean air and environmental justice everywhere.

COMPETING INTERESTS

Dr. Catherine Garoupa White worked as staff for the Central Valley Air Quality Coalition from 2006 to 2011, served as a volunteer on the Steering Committee from 2018 to 2019, and recently returned as Executive Director in January 2020. These timeframes are outside of when this research was conducted and do not represent a competing interest.

APPENDIX

List of Support and Opposition for Senate Bill 719 (2007, Machado)

Support (Verified 4/30/07)

  • American Lung Association

  • California Rural Legal Assistance Foundation

  • Californians for Pesticide Reform

  • Center on Race, Poverty & the Environment

  • Central Valley Air Quality Coalition Steering Committee

  • Clean Power Campaign

  • Coalition for Clean Air

  • Community Action to Fight Asthma

  • Concerned Residents of Lockwood Valley

  • Environment California

  • Kirsch Foundation

  • Latino Issues Forum

  • Medical Advocates for Healthy Air

  • Merced/Mariposa County Asthma Coalition

  • Natural Resources Defense Council

  • Planning and Conservation League

  • Service Employees International Union

  • Sierra Club California

  • TriCounty Watchdogs

  • Union of Concerned Scientists

Opposition (Verified 4/30/07)

  • California Cotton Ginners and Growers Association

  • California Council for Environmental and Economic Balance

  • California Dairies

  • California Farmers Union

  • California Grape and Tree Fruit League

  • California League of Food Processors

  • California State Association of Counties

  • Challenge Dairy Products, Inc.

  • County of Tulare

  • El Monte Dairy

  • Fresno County Farm Bureau

  • Greater Madera County Industrial Association

  • Merced County

  • Nisei Farmers League

  • Tulare County Farm Bureau

  • Western States Petroleum Association

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