CAG General Meeting November 9, 2022



CAG Board Members

Michael Pouncil, Chair

Doug Larson

Sarah Taylor


Participants: 17


This meeting is recorded.

Portland Harbor CAG YouTube page. “Subscribe here” and at the bottom of the page.

Sarah Taylor: Land Acknowledgement (summary): The Portland Metro area rests on traditional Native sites. We thank the original caretakers of this land, acknowledge the systemic racism involved in the cleanup of the Willamette River. Tribes will heal only when we understand the harms done and we promise to continue to learn and to honor, respect and take care of this watershed, all that it offers to all living beings.


Sarah – We’re in the new PHCAG office at Green Anchors. Welcome.


Upcoming Events


Thursday, November 10 Pilot EPA EJScreen Training (6-7pm Pacific) – Virtual and In-Person Options Available.
Information can be found below for both virtual & in-person options.
Who:  While this training is focused on community members affected and impacted by the Superfund Site, anyone is welcome to attend either in-person (limited space) or virtually!
When:  Thursday, November 10th from 6-7pm (Pacific)
Where:  In-Person (limited space at the City of Portland’s Water Pollution Control Lab, 6543 N Burlington Ave) and Virtual! (Location Here)
RSVP:  Please submit an RSVP as soon as possible if you are interested in attending this event either virtually or in-person to help us with our planning. After you RSVP, you will receive more information in advance of the event!


Voices of the Lower Willamette exhibit is currently at the Lloyd center. On December 3 in the afternoon, we will have music. If you’re a musician let Sarah know and Sarah will get you on the lineup.


Rumble on the River Community Forum 2: What’s Up with Zenith Energy and the Critical Energy Infrastructure Hub in Portland”

WHEN: November 16 from 6:00 – 8:00 p.m.

WHERE: St. Luke Lutheran Church (4595 SW California St, Portland, OR 97219) 

COST: Free! Please invite anyone you know who cares about clean air, safe communities, and environmental justice.


Collaborative Meeting December 7. We’ll send out an announcement.





Presentation with Emily Bitalac, EPA Region 10 Environmental Justice Coordinator


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, regulation and policies.


A live demonstration from EPA on the Environmental Justice Screening and Mapping Tool (EJScreen). EJScreen is a tool that provides EPA with a nationally consistent dataset and approach for combining environmental and demographic socioeconomic indicators. EJScreen can be used to help EPA and Community members with outreach, and consider geographic areas for additional resources


EJScreen Website:


Link to informational YouTube Video:


Justice = fixing the system to offer equal access to both tools and opportunities.


EJ Funding opportunities:

EJ Thriving Communities Technical Assistance Centers (EJTCTAC) Program

EJ Government-to Government Program (EJG2G) – previously known as State Environmental Justice Collaborative Agreements

EJ Collaborative Problem-Solving Cooperative Agreement (EJCPS)

EJ Cooperative Pass-Through Funder Program (EJCPF)


EJSCREEN – What is it?

A Web-based GIS tool for nationally consistent EJ screening and mapping. Combines environmental and socioeconomic data to highlight areas where vulnerable populations may be disproportionately impacted by pollution.




Key Features:

Annually Updated Data, Annually Updated Demographics, Ability to Download Data, Accessibility


Primary EJScreen datasets:

12 Indexes, 12 Supplemental Indexes, 12 Environmental , 7 Socioeconomic indications, 3 Health indications, 6 Climate indicators, 3 Critical service gaps


EJScreen Data:

United States, State, County, Census Tract, Block Group (collection of residential blocks), a valuable resource for information, Block (one block bounded on all sides by streets)


Environemtntal idicators:

Particulate Matter


Diesel Particulate Matter

Air Toxics Cancer Risk

Air Toxics Respiratory Hazard Index

Traffic Proximity and Volume

Lead Paint

Superfund Proximity

Risk Management Plan Facility Proximity

Hazardous Waste Proximity

Underground Storage Tanks and Leaking

Wastewater Discharge Indicator


Socioeconomic Indicators

People of Color



Limited English speaking

Less Than High School Education

Under age 5

Over age 64


The EJ index:

Low Life Expectancy

Heart Disease


Climate Indicators

Wildfire Risk

Flood Risk


Coastal Flood Hazard

100-Year Flood Risk


Critical Service Gaps Indicators

Food Desert

Medically Underserved

Broadband Internet


External Users of EJScreen:

State Government, Local Government, Federal Government, Community of Faith-Based Organization, Community Citizen, Consulting Practice, Business Entity

Foundation, Other


Q&A for Emily Bitalac


Q: Example: lead paint – comparing states. Can we know what is concerned to be safe or unsafe?

A: Eventually you can look at these pollutants separately. You will see a state average value, and you can compare one to another. The EPA website can tell you what the healthy-unhealthy range is.


Q: This tool looks research-oriented. Have you considered reaching out to universities who can help you with case studies?

A: Great feedback. We’ve seen some universities using this tool.


Q: If I wanted to know more detailed information about, for example, low life expectancy?

A: Click on the “I” for detailed information.


Q: Can you take that data about low life expectancy and relate this to what might be causal?

A: Maybe not.  


Q: Academics might have sophisticated types of analysis to show relationships (maybe not causal), but a direct correlation related to when you have this situation, life expectancy goes down. Universities can help, students are constantly looking for projects.

A: Would be great to have more studies.


Q: How far back in time does the data go?  It’s important to show what happened in the past, impact of pollution, impact of policy changes.

A: I will bring that feedback to headquarters.


Q: In Portland we’ve had a number of mills from the 1910’s – 1940’s which are now non-existent but their pollution remains. Does this data include that far back or is this just current data?

A: Current data only on this, but that content is considered at EPA.  


Comment:  This is a powerful tool, a work in progress. We need to gain more information about our local community, schools, people living near the river. You’ll need to do your own homework to use this tool. And it’s free to users.

Comment: Using this tool, you can see clearly what people are facing. Hoping that a lot of people in Portland will use this tool

Contact: Michael Pouncil at 503.705.7224,

Portland Harbor CAG
Portland Harbor CAG YouTube 

Our mailing address is: 

Portland Harbor Community Advisory Group

8316 N. Lombard St., PMB #344

Portland, OR  97203

Notes taken by Jane Terzis