JPB Fellow Tony Reames grew up in rural South Carolina in a “quintessential environmental-justice community,” as he puts it. After the textile industry collapsed in the 1990s, the region was saddled with both the state’s largest landfill and its largest maximum-security prison. It wasn’t until college that Reames, now an assistant professor at the University of Michigan, realized what had been going on in his own hometown — specifically, the way that social status shaped the physical landscape. “That realization led me to the work I now do on green buildings and energy justice,” says the 2019 Grist 50 Fixer, whose research has clarified the role that energy plays in the cost of housing. Read more.