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Increasingly, legal institutions cannot resolve disputes over the siting of hazardous waste facilities. One reason for the impasse between developers, regulators, and opponents is the inability to establish a fair distribution of environmental burdens. Since justice is a key element of resolving environmental and land use disputes, Essential Injustice is about pollution, burden, and injustice. Is it fair to restrict economic progress or private property for the comfort of anxious citizens? Does society equitably compel one community to tolerate extraordinary burdens for the benefit of the general public? Obviously, easy answers are not available, because pollution will not go away, some people are going to suffer, and injustice is inevitable. By listening to the victims of injustice, however, we can learn to avoid the consequences of environmental injustice.