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Former Administrator Lisa P. Jackson (This site is no longer updated.)

âwe can preserve our climate, protect our health and strengthen our economy all at the same time.
Pollutants like mercury, smog and soot are neurotoxins and killers. They cause developmental problems and asthma in kids and heart attacks and premature deaths in vulnerable adults.
When you get a glass of water from the faucet, EPA makes sure that it is clean and healthy.
Environmental regulations have sparked cutting-edge innovations; they have provided the American people with some $22 trillion in health benefits; and by cleaning up the air, water and land, we have given our communities the foundations they need for success.
â we've learned that the engines of opportunity and prosperity in this country run better when they run clean.

Note: EPA no longer updates this information, but it may be useful as a reference or resource.

Posted on May 24, 2012

Obama Administration Announces Members of Steering Team to Lead Interagency Coordination of Unconventional Oil and Gas Research and Development

As part of the Obama Administration’s all-of-the-above approach to American energy, three federal agencies announced today the members of the steering team that will lead efforts to coordinate research addressing the challenges of safely and prudently developing unconventional shale gas and tight oil resources. The formation of the steering team is the first step in the formal cross-government coordination required under President Obama’s Executive Order released last month, and announced in a joint memorandum signed on April 13, 2012 by the U.S. Department of Energy, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency and the U. S. Department of the Interior.

Domestic natural gas and oil will continue to play a critical role in America’s energy future. Since 2008, domestic oil and gas production has risen every year, while imports have fallen. Unconventional oil and gas production has been a key factor in this emerging trend.  As President Obama has made clear, the U.S. must develop all of America’s energy resources, while giving American families and communities confidence that natural and cultural resources, air and water quality, and public health and safety will not be compromised.

The Steering Team is leading a multi-agency collaboration to coordinate research and development to address the highest priority challenges associated with safe and responsible development of domestic unconventional shale gas and tight oil resources.  Each agency has a different set of experiences and research competencies relevant to this challenge, and the three agencies coordinate research efforts.  The steering team announced today will enhance the on-going cooperative activities and will oversee a multi-year, inter-agency research plan under which the three agencies will cooperate on research topics as appropriate.

As per the memorandum, the Steering Team consists of two members from each of the three agencies, one member focused on policy and one member focused on research and technology.  In addition, the White House Office of Science and Technology Policy provides a member to serve on the committee.

The Department of Energy will serve as the lead agency of the Steering Committee for the first year, with DOE Deputy Assistant Secretary for Oil and Natural Gas Christopher Smith serving as chair.  The Steering Team may establish technical subcommittees as appropriate to analyze research gaps, prioritize topics, create a multi-year research plan, and accomplish other tasks as established by the joint memorandum.

Steering team representatives are as follows with biographies below: Read More »»

Note: EPA no longer updates this information, but it may be useful as a reference or resource.

Posted on May 2, 2012

The Youth Sustainability Challenge: Creating an America Built to Last

By Lisa P. Jackson and Nancy Sutley

Today we are excited to announce a new initiative in partnership with America’s young leaders. We’re asking you, America’s youth, to tell the world how you’re fostering sustainability and creating an America built to last. Starting today, submit your video message for the Youth Sustainability Challenge and share how you’re making a difference.

This June, leaders from around the world will convene in Rio de Janeiro to mark the 20th anniversary of the historic “Earth Summit,” formally known as the United Nations Conference on Sustainable Development. The conference is an opportunity for the world to engage in a global conversation and take action to build a healthier and more sustainable future for our planet.

Here at home, we are focused on taking action to protect the health of our families and communities, and build a strong and growing economy and middle class. Americans are already working together to create innovative solutions to our shared global challenges, including through clean energy innovations and investments that support hundreds of thousands of jobs and have put us on track to double renewable energy generation in the U.S. by the end of this year.

The Obama Administration will continue to support American innovation and smart investments that will build a strong and healthy country and economy. We also believe that real progress begins with individuals who take action in their own homes and their own communities. That’s why, as we prepare for the conference in Rio, we are challenging America’s future leaders to do their part.

This Tuesday, May 8, Obama Administration officials and youth sustainability leaders will gather for an event at the White House to mark the launch of this Challenge. But you can get involved now. Join the conversation. Encourage others to do the same. Demonstrate how you have power to create an America built to last – and to change our world for the better.

• Twitter: Use the hashtag #EarthDayEveryDay
• Facebook: Like Administrator Jackson and The White House Council on Environmental Quality, and update your status and profile image.

Nancy Sutley is Chair of the White House Council on Environmental Quality
Lisa P. Jackson is the Administrator of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency

Note: EPA no longer updates this information, but it may be useful as a reference or resource.

Posted on April 26, 2012

Enforcing America’s Environmental Laws

By Cynthia Giles, Assistant Administrator, Office of Enforcement and Compliance Assurance

Our nation’s environmental laws are the envy of the world. Whether it’s the Clean Water Act or the Clean Air Act, we have set the standard for environmental and human health protection.

It is EPA’s responsibility to carry out and enforce those laws, and our enforcement program is essential to protecting the health of millions of Americans. It also ensures that companies are playing by the same rules, so that no business is put at a disadvantage because they are complying with the law and their competitors are not.

As we enforce our nation’s laws, a fundamental value is fairness. Vigorously following science and the law is what the American public expects.

It is deeply unfortunate that in a 2010 video an EPA official inaccurately suggests we are seeking to “make examples” out of certain companies in the oil and gas industry. We, and the official involved, regret the statement, for which he has apologized. It does not reflect our record over the last three years. Inevitably, some will try to imply that the unfortunate and inaccurate words of one regional official represent this Agency’s policy. Rest assured that they do not – and no honest examination of our record could equate our commonsense approach with such an exaggerated claim. Any notion that the oil and gas industries have been unfairly targeted simply doesn’t conform to the fact that oil production under this administration is higher than it has been at any time in the last eight years, and that natural gas production has experienced an historic expansion as well.

Our approach to enforcing the laws that govern this sector is evident in a recent innovative settlement with Marathon Petroleum Company that will slash thousands of tons of pollution that threatens nearby communities – while delivering cost savings to the company by improving efficiency and capturing more product that is currently wasted.

I strongly encourage any American who has concerns about our approach to enforcement to take a look at the work we have actually done. As head of the national enforcement program, I am confident you will find that a misguided statement by a regional official does not in any way reflect the three-year record of commonsense actions we have taken to reduce harmful pollution while EPA encourages the development of our domestic energy resources.

Note: EPA no longer updates this information, but it may be useful as a reference or resource.

Posted on April 20, 2012

Be Part of the Conversation this Earth Day

By Lisa P. Jackson.

This entry was previously posted on EPA’s blog page.

This weekend, people across the US and around the world will celebrate the 42nd annual Earth Day. After four decades, the event that started with 20 million Americans has blossomed into a day of service and celebration for nearly a billion people in every part of the planet. Every year I’m reminded that at the heart of Earth Day there is a simple goal: Help every person see the connections between our lives and the health of our environment.

The first Earth Day was organized as a series of teach-ins to start a discussion about the pollution in our communities, and those small beginnings sparked major changes: the creation of the US Environmental Protection Agency and the passage of the Clean Air Act and the Clean Water Act, which turns 40 this year.

Bringing people together around these issues continues to be essential, and we have been working to expand the conversation on environmentalism to new places. We want mothers and fathers to know how important clean air is to their health and the health of their children. We want African Americans and Latinos to join the conversation about environmental challenges in their communities, so we can address disparities in asthma, cancer and other illnesses, and work for environmental justice. We want you – wherever you live – to start your own conversation about protecting health and the environment.

Fortunately, this Earth Day we have more ways to connect, discuss and act than ever before.

EPA’s Earth Day page offers a range of ways for you to bring your voice to this conversation, and be a part of the work to protect our planet.

We’re counting on you to tell your friends and family, your local officials, and your entire world about protecting our health and preserving our planet. I hope you’ll lend your voice to these important issues, Earth Day and every day.

About the author: Lisa Jackson is the Administrator of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency.

Agency Priorities

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