Community Member

Community In-Power And Development Association Inc

Port Arthur, Texas

Community In-Power and Development Association Inc. (CIDA) began in 2000 to fight the chronic poisoning of low-income communities living along the “fence line” of Port Arthur TX’s petrochemical industry. Port Arthur, home to one of the country’s largest and highest-polluting refineries, has been ravaged by storms and hurricanes, causing significant flooding and damage. After Hurricane Harvey (2017) and Hurricane Laura (2020), residents faced a tough decision: leave their homes and expose themselves to COVID-19 or stay without power or water and face the impacts of chemical leaks and pollution from industrial areas hit by the storm. CIDA and the city of Port Arthur are working together to develop a floodplain management plan to identify triggers for flooding and expand development options focused on flood mitigation and nature-based strategies. These actions would include physical interventions such as floodproofing properties, home buyouts, and engagement around emergency preparedness.

Hilton Kelley talks to Beatrice Sanders, a flood survivor in Port Arthur, Texas – and he pleas for help from local, state and federal government.

CIDA is a grassroots community organization, led by community members of color living, working, and worshiping in Port Arthur, Texas. Founded in 2000 to fight on behalf of Port Arthur’s low-income “fence line” communities against chronic poisoning from the nearby refinery complex, CIDA’s work has expanded to address flooding caused by increasingly frequent hurricanes, as well as mitigating energy insecurity in Port Arthur’s West Side. Its staff team of seven has had an outsize impact on its West Side project area of focus. Through collaborations with government, non-profit, and academic partners, CIDA has installed nature-based flood resilience systems, increased energy independence for residents, and developed climate resiliency plans for Port Arthur. The impact of this work extends beyond the West Side and into the surrounding Golden Triangle region, through CIDA’s service as a resilience hub for underserved communities engaging in climate resilience planning in the region.

For more information:

‘A Dream Deferred:’ 30 Years of U.S. Environmental Justice in Port Arthur – Texas, Inside Climate News, February 2024

Frontline 360° Is Helping Grassroots Groups Land Federal Dollars — and Building a Movement – Inside Philanthropy, February 2023

Discovery of oil-like substance in Port Arthur residential area prompts investigation – 12 News, June 2022

Port Arthur community hope new EPA strategy will improve air quality in minority communities – 12 News, February 2022

Former Hollywood actor now fights polluters on Texas’ Gulf Coast – Catholic Health World, August 2021

Clean Air Is a God-Given Right – Earth Island Journal, Summer 2021

A2 Staff

A2 Staff

This profile was compiled by a dedicated team of staff members who conducted interviews and gathered information from various outlets, including news articles, social media, and other sources.


Hilton Kelley


Social Media

Climate Impacts

Air Pollution, Flooding, Water Contamination

Environmental Justice Concerns

Hazardous/Toxic Sites, Incinerator/Dumping/Landfill


Community Farm/Gardens, Elevation or Relocation of Homes, Fighting Industrial Contamination, Halting Bad Development, Nature-Based Solutions

501c3 Tax Deductible


Accepting Donations