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Cancer-Free New Economy Jamaica Plain: Integrating Toxics Reduction Approaches with Sustainable Community Development

Project Details

Year: 2014
Location: Jamaica Plain
Project Manager: Chuck Collins & Carlos Espinoza-Toro, JPNET
Partners: Lowell Center for Sustainable Production, Jamaica Plain Centre-South Main Streets, Toxics Action Center


The Jamaica Plain New Economy Transition is a community-based effort to strengthen community resilience and support the transition to a sustainable and equitable economy. The goal of this project is to pilot an approach for promoting toxics use reduction as a fundamental strategy for elevating business and community practices to reduce toxic exposures on our way to a cancer-free and prosperous neighborhood and economy. The project team will develop methods and materials to encourage a community conversation about the use of carcinogens at a local level. They will hold a workshop on strategies to eliminate carcinogens and identify 20 individual businesses that may be interested in transitioning away from carcinogens and using safer alternatives.


Through 6 public forums, more than 250 people – including mothers, environmental activists, artists, community healthcare leaders, business owners and business association leaders – learned about cancer research, generated tangible local solutions, and pledged to support business transitions to safe alternatives in Jamaica Plain.  With the support of a TURI grant and a Kickstarter Campaign, a local dry cleaner is successfully transitioning from using perchlorethylene to Wet Cleaning. This transition will ensure a perc-free environment for the business owners, employees and customers.  Lastly, through 2 public forums, more than 50 people – including environmental activists from Cape Cod and Framingham – have started to generate ideas about how to implement cancer-free economy approaches in their communities.

This page updated Monday July 23 2018