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7th, 8th, 9th, 10th


Social Studies, Engineering

Regional Focus

Global, North America, United States

Energy Justice Now!

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  • This short animated video explains how access to energy is linked to racial justice.
  • This video follows the story of two friends as they learn about energy justice and are empowered to fight for equal access to energy.
Teaching Tips


  • This is a great way to introduce students to the many facets of climate justice.
  • The language and tone of the video make the content easy to understand and accessible.

Additional Prerequisites

  • This video is part of a lesson called Energy Justice.
  • The full image of the video cannot be seen unless you zoom out or play it in full-screen mode.


  • Younger students may need to be introduced to the concept of racial justice before watching the video.
  • To further their knowledge on energy justice, have students interview a local community member that has experienced a health issue related to poor air quality or industrial pollution.
  • Have students engage in a self-reflection activity, writing about how their perspective on climate justice has evolved throughout the lesson.
  • Use this video to learn more about the link between climate justice and racial justice and this video to see climate justice in action.
Scientist Notes
This short film presents the story of Frank, a high school graduate working two part time jobs and looking for a better job. After a disappointing interview and talking with a friend, Frank sees renewable energy as an industry that will provide him with a lasting career. Frank and his friend then head to an Energy Justice open house where facts are presented on global deaths due to air pollution and how low-income households are disproportionately impacted. While the sources used are not cited in the video description, a quick search shows that the claim of global deaths due to air pollution is from a 2021 article in the journal Environmental Research and the data about energy burdens is from a report from the American Council for an Energy-Efficient Economy. This video resource is relatable for most teenagers and provides a compelling case for energy justice. This resource is recommended for teaching.
  • College, Career, and Civic Life (C3) Standards
    • Dimension 2: Civics
      • D2.Civ.1.6-8 Distinguish the powers and responsibilities of citizens, political parties, interest groups, and the media in a variety of governmental and nongovernmental contexts.
    • Dimension 4: Taking Informed Action
      • D4.6.6-8 Draw on multiple disciplinary lenses to analyze how a specific problem can manifest itself at local, regional, and global levels over time, identifying its characteristics and causes, and the challenges and opportunities faced by those trying to address the problem.
      • D4.7.9-12 Assess options for individual and collective action to address local, regional, and global problems by engaging in self-reflection, strategy identification, and complex causal reasoning.
  • Common Core English Language Arts Standards (CCSS.ELA)
    • Speaking & Listening (K-12)
      • CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.SL.8.2 Analyze the purpose of information presented in diverse media and formats (e.g., visually, quantitatively, orally) and evaluate the motives (e.g., social, commercial, political) behind its presentation.
  • Next Generation Science Standards (NGSS)
    • ESS3: Earth and Human Activity
      • HS-ESS3-4 Evaluate or refine a technological solution that reduces impacts of human activities on natural systems.
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