In the European historiography on social inequality one aspect is strikingly missing: the ecological aspect. Therefore, this paper introduces the concept of “environmental justice” to the discussion. The concept originally stems from a US-social movement that emerged in the 1980s. Today, “environmental justice” is at the same time a social claim, a political principle, as well as an academic concept. While the concept entered the discourse of several academic disciplines from sociology to public-health studies, it is still seldom used in European historiography. This paper argues that “environmental justice” can be employed as an analytic category especially in economic, social, and environmental history, while at the same time being able to connect these disciplines. With the example of the introduction of centralised water infrastructures in European cities, the article explores difficulties and potentials of an application of the “environmental justice”- concept.