Statement: Chevron Fire Explosion affecting residents of Richmond

The Ella Baker Center for Human Rights is deeply concerned for the residents of Richmond California following a series of explosions that ignited a large fire at the Richmond Chevron Refinery, its second in five years.  

The Ella Baker Center is launching an email petition urging leaders at Chevron to be transparent in their findings and fair in their compensation to residents of the Richmond California. The Center will also be working closely with partner organizations such as the Asian Pacific Environmental Network to identify next steps moving forward to ensure accountability and justice.

The Ella Baker Center knows too well about the well-documented health disparities for people of color and poor people. We also recognize that Chevron, the single largest stationary source of greenhouse gas emissions in California, is part of the reason why Richmond and the surrounding Contra Costa County have record high rates of asthma, respiratory disease and cancer even before this incident added damage to damage.

The Chevron Refinery fire is a disaster for everyone in Richmond and beyond. We hope that from the tragedy comes honest dialogue about our over-reliance on polluting industries and about the need for our Corporate neighbors to recommit to accountability for the health and well-being of people and the environment.


The award-winning Ella Baker Center is named for an unsung hero of the civil rights movement who inspired and guided emerging leaders. We build on her legacy by giving people opportunities and skills to work together to strengthen our communities so that all of us can thrive.