Superfund Research Program

March 2024

Richmond-Bryant and Chuqi Guo
Richmond-Bryant, right, and a member of her research team, Chuqi Guo, Ph.D., left, set up air pollution measurement devices in Colfax, Louisiana. (Image courtesy of Jennifer Richmond-Bryant)

Researchers at the Louisiana State University (LSU) Superfund Research Program (SRP) Center used community interview data, referred to as oral history, to reveal long-term effects of a thermal treatment waste facility on residents in Colfax, Louisiana.

The study, led by former LSU SRP Center trainee Matilda Odera and Jennifer Richmond-Bryant, Ph.D., co-author and investigator with the LSU SRP Center, corroborated personal stories of social and health experiences from community members with air pollution data, traced to the facility.

“The narratives showed that there are several dimensions to the injustices experienced by local residents,” said Odera. “The health effects on residents have been coupled with erasure of local culture and exclusion from decision-making about the facility. Oral history was a way to give the power of owning the research back to the residents, and their voice is ever-present in the data.”

To learn more, see the NIEHS Environmental Factor Newsletter.