Rise St. James is a faith-based grassroots organization that is fighting for environmental justice as it works to defeat the proliferation of petrochemical industries in St. James Parish, Louisiana. Nicknamed “Cancer Alley” for the above-average rates of cancer there, the area is home to a high concentration of polluting industries. Despite this, the state has plans to expand this chemical corridor with dozens more factories. Led by Sharon Lavigne, 2021’s Goldman Environmental Prize winner, Rise St. James galvanized community opposition and successfully defeated the construction of a $1.25 billion plastics manufacturing plant in 2019. The group is currently fighting to prevent Formosa Plastics from building a massive multibillion-dollar plastics plant in the parish.
Location: St. James Parish, Louisiana
Director: Sharon Lavigne
Address: c/o Earth Island Institute, 2150 Allston Way, Suite 460, Berkeley, CA 94704