The Superfund Next Door

Toxins & Mistrust in Atlanta

For the people of Atlanta’s Vine City and English Avenue neighborhoods, life inside a Superfund site isn’t exactly easy. Despite the federal government’s efforts to clean up lead-contaminated soil across more than 600 acres, remediation alone has not been enough to win over residents. With gentrification encroaching from all sides, many who live on the site view the cleanup with a jaundiced eye, suspecting it could push them off the increasingly valuable land where Black Atlantans have lived for nearly a century.

Their reluctance—complicated by additional worries about mold and flooding—has delayed remediation and exposure research efforts in the area. Through the eyes of residents, Inside Climate News explains what it’s like to live with a Superfund next door.