WOEIP has been recognized across the country for our pioneering approach to environmental justice through community-based participatory research and collaborative problem-solving models.

Members of the media can reach us at press@woeip.org.

“…residents are still more likely to suffer asthma, heart problems and other health effects from air pollution than those in other parts of the city. And Gordon said she is aghast that low income housing is still being built with windows opening right out onto the freeway in her part of the city.

‘These people have been dying of the same things for 50 years and in 50 years we have not come up with a solution,’ Gordon said, noting in comparison that it took industry less than a year to develop a vaccine for the coronavirus. ‘That’s a straight-up slap to all humanity…'”

“At her home about a block from the Port of Oakland, where ships and diesel trucks belch particle matter round-the-clock, California activist Margaret Gordon believes that government and corporations long placed pollution sources near non-White communities by design.

The finding that Black people suffer more from freeway pollution is something ‘we’ve been living and looking at … for years,’ she said. The evidence is found in the crevices of people’s ceilings, she added. ‘It’s not dirt; it’s particulates.'”

“‘I used to see all these inhalers in shoeboxes and a basket with the kids’ names on it,’ she said. Many of the neighborhood children had asthma, the nurse told her. Ms. Gordon had also noticed that same health condition, for both children and adults, coming up in meeting after meeting in the community. She wondered if these respiratory issues had to do with all the trucks rolling daily through the neighborhood, heading in and out of the Port of Oakland. They literally left their mark on the inside of her home, where she would see streaks of ‘black soot on my windowsill.’”

“It’s a sunny Friday afternoon in West Oakland but community organizer Margaret Gordon, 72, is inside at the West Oakland Environmental Indicators Project, poring over maps of the city. Interstate 880 and the train station are both visible through the office window, and diesel trucks going to and from the port are more common than commuter cars. She points to a map, overlaid with dotted red lines, each covering a street in West Oakland, that highlights the effects all of those vehicles have on the community’s air.”

How new data is helping West Oakland clear the air

Environmental Defense Fund | January 2020

“The fight for healthier air in West Oakland spans generations. Just Ask Ms. Margaret Gordon, who has been at it since 1992. “I’ve had 16 grandchildren and one great-grandchild since then,” says the co-director of the West Oakland Environmental Indicators Project (WOEIP). Two years ago her community’s efforts got a much-needed boost: California passed AB 617, establishing a program requiring the state to reduce air pollution in those areas most impacted. Under the Community Air Protection Plan, community groups, environmental organizations, industry and local air districts work with the California Air Resources Board (CARB) to develop improvement plans.”

Margaret Gordon Clears the Air

Oakland Magazine | December 2019

“Many people have been described as “a force of nature.” But few fit the bill as truly as Ms. Margaret Gordon, co-founder of the West Oakland Environmental Indicators Project, former Port of Oakland commissioner, and committed fighter for environmental justice. It wasn’t always so.”

“The fight for healthier air in West Oakland spans generations. Just Ask Ms. Margaret Gordon, who has been at it since 1992. “I’ve had 16 grandchildren and one great-grandchild since then,” says the co-director of the West Oakland Environmental Indicators Project (WOEIP). Two years ago her community’s efforts got a much-needed boost: California passed AB 617, establishing a program requiring the state to reduce air pollution in those areas most impacted. Under the Community Air Protection Plan, community groups, environmental organizations, industry and local air districts work with the California Air Resources Board (CARB) to develop improvement plans.”

“The Bay Area Air Quality Management District (BAAQMD) approved West Oakland’s first comprehensive air pollution plan to emerge from a community-led process, at a packed meeting held in Oakland earlier this month.”

As they continue to explore a proposed Howard Terminal ballpark, the Oakland A’s are partnering with the West Oakland Environmental Indicators Project (WOEIP). 

The Port of Oakland’s Howard Terminal is the A’s preferred site for a proposed ballpark and surrounding development, with the facility possibility opening as early as 2023 and replacing the Oakland-Alameda County Coliseum as the team’s home. In their ongoing effort to move that concept forward, the A’s are partnering with WOEIP to help address environmental and economic concerns stemming from the proposal.