Our Commitment to Diversity and Inclusion

Not everyone has access to clean water and healthy ecosystems. This is, unfortunately, a legacy of historic injustices in our communities. With Harpeth Conservancy’s mission being to provide such resources to all Tennesseans, it is essential that our work also addresses the environmental disparities that persist among us. These disparities contribute to environmental inequity, or the disproportionate impact of harmful environmental hazards, disasters, and pollution on groups or individuals because of factors such as race, income, or education, among others.

Our goal is “environmental equity” — where no single group or community is disproportionately impacted by harmful environmental hazards, disasters, and pollution. Achieving “environmental equity” requires collective action to dismantle historic legacies of marginalization and to rebuild fairer ones in their place, in other words, to do “environmental justice”. Environmental justice is the fair treatment and meaningful involvement of all people regardless of race, color, national origin, or income, with respect to the development, implementation, and enforcement of environmental laws, regulations, and policies.

People Exploring Nature (P.E.N.) PALS Educational Event - Harpeth Conservancy

At-risk communities include not only those in urban areas who may be impacted by locally unwanted land uses (LULUs) such as polluting industrial or sewer plants but also those in rural areas affected by concentrated animal feeding operations (CAFOs) and other agricultural and industrial pollution. Environmental justice thus seeks redress the unfair shifting onto the disadvantaged of all races the sometimes toxic costs of our industrial society and to create a more just and equitable society, one that prevents the costs and burdens of our society of being literally dumped on its most vulnerable citizens.

The work of environmental justice is what Harpeth Conservancy aims to do and continually improve upon in our programming. We do this through meaningful involvement in water issues that enact fair treatment for Tennessee communities such as clean water advocacy, river education, and community collaboration. We invite you to join us in this daily work to effect change, for what better time than now.

P.E.N. Pals Outdoor Summer Camp - Harpeth Conservancy

Latest Posts

Clean Water Protection

Harpeth Conservancy joins community to Protect the Piney River

Harpeth Conservancy, along with legal and engineering experts working for Friends of the Piney, reviewed PSC’s materials submitted to the Commission the week prior. Our overarching assessment—based on decades of working with local, state, and federal agencies’ permitting requirements to protect public health and waterways—was that PSC provided insufficient details to county decisionmakers about how the development will address severe flooding and flood safety, sewage treatment, and drinking water.

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Clean Water Protection

Duck River Permits

The Tennessee Department of Environment & Conservation (TDEC) is asking for public comments on a series of proposed and expanded water withdrawals (by drinking water utilities) from one of the most biodiverse rivers in the world—the Duck River—which flows through Middle Tennessee.

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Clean Water Protection

Holiday Gift for Lick Creek

In a significant win for clean water advocates, the Tennessee Department of Environment and Conservation (TDEC) made a crucial decision over the holidays to deny

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