Fellow Story

Reyna analyzes racial, capitalist and imperialist legacy of El Segundo Refinery

Edgar Reyna co-authored a study examining the “specific social, economic, and political dynamics of land, property, and resource exchange at the El Segundo Chevron refinery, to illustrate larger intersecting systems of white supremacy, settler colonialism, extractive capitalism, racial capitalism, and urban land teleconnections.” The paper is open-access and available here in both English and Spanish. 


Planning for racially just futures requires reckoning with and unlearning practices of whiteness embedded within histories and theories of planning. Through archival and policy research, this historical-structural analysis identifies the El Segundo Chevron oil refinery as a center of racial capitalism and imperialism. The refinery’s formation in 1911 was not only enabled by racially exclusive policy, but also shaped the City of El Segundo through the consolidation of corporate political power at the local level. Sites of extraction, from Los Angeles to the Amazon, reveal historic and ongoing injustices, which built environment disciplines must confront in order to move forward in solidarity. 


Liang, L., Ramirez, E., Reyna, E., & Zhang, B. (2023). The El Segundo Refinery: Whiteness, Imperialist Expansion and Extractive Infrastructures. Critical Planning, 26. http://dx.doi.org/10.5070/CP826159868 Retrieved from https://escholarship.org/uc/item/3mm0232g