Graduation Year


Document Type

Open Access Senior Thesis

Degree Name

Bachelor of Arts


Environmental Analysis

Reader 1

Guillermo Douglass-Jaimes

Reader 2

Susan Phillips

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Rights Information

© 2019 Aviva R Wolf-Jacobs


Planning and regulatory environmental agency San Francisco Bay Conservation and Development Commission (BCDC) plays an important role in the permitting of development around the San Francisco Bay. As the agency works to add an environmental justice amendment to its primary policy document, this research explores the S.F. Bay Area’s history of approved development project proposal permits, and the associated patterns of land use and environmental justice implications in order to support the proposed change in permitting policy. By classifying all major permits found within BCDC’s internal permit database into groups based on the type of land use associated with the permit project, i.e. Industrial, Flood Control, Ports, etc., it was possible to create maps showing the geographic distribution of each group of permits. To analyze potential environmental justice implications of the patterns of geographic distribution of development permits, each group of permit types was layered on top of spatial data representing areas around the SF Bay that have been identified as highly socially vulnerable. Based on the findings of this project, it appears that highly socially vulnerable communities around the San Francisco Bay bear a disproportionate amount of land-use related environmental burdens. Furthermore, it is crucial to recognize the limitations of geospatial analysis tools in conveying the magnitude of disproportionate environmental and community health impacts of land use on socially vulnerable communities in the San Francisco Bay Area.