Good News For Clean Air: Gina McCarthy Nominated For Top EPA Post

EDF staffers Marcia Aronoff, Mark MacLeod, and Elena Craft, join Gina McCarthy at a SmartWay press conference in South Carolina in 2011.

We were pleased to hear this week’s announcement by President Obama nominating Gina McCarthy as the next leader of the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA). Click here to listen to the transcript of the President’s announcement of McCarthy’s nomination.

As EPA Assistant Administrator for Air and Radiation, McCarthy led the development of historic national emission standards for power plant mercury and soot emissions. She also helped implement greenhouse gas and fuel economy standards for passenger vehicles.

EDF President Fred Krupp praised the nomination in Time magazine saying that McCarthy was “well known for listening and responding to the concerns of both environmental advocates and industry stakeholders, and for pursuing a regulatory approach that is flexible, reasonable and cost-effective.”

Similar sentiments were echoed in the Washington Post, which stated that McCarthy had “cultivated a strong working relationship with members of the business community, dampening much of the opposition her selection might otherwise have encountered.”

Likewise, Michael Bradley, executive director of The Clean Energy Group, said that McCarthy “has taken a measured approach to balancing energy and environmental issues while thoughtfully engaging with industry to develop sensible clean air policies.”

Gina is no stranger to Texas. She has been to the Houston region many times to share her messages supporting clean air. I have had the privilege of seeing first hand her dedication to science and to public health.

In 2009, Gina came to Houston to award the region $9 million worth of American Recovery and Reinvestment Act SmartWay Diesel Emissions Reduction Act funding to the Houston-Galveston Area Council (HGAC) to start a clean truck program in Houston. EDF, together with the Port of Houston Authority and HGAC partnered on the grant application for these SmartWay program funds. McCarthy also presented testimony regarding regulation of greenhouse gases at a field hearing in Houston held by the Energy and Power Subcommittee of the House Energy and Commerce Committee in March of 2011.

In June 2011, McCarthy joined EDF, the Coalition for Responsible Transportation and the Port of Charleston in announcing support for a goods movement initiative called the EPA SmartWay Drayage Program, which builds partnerships between the retail industry, trucking, and port communities to help reduce harmful air emissions from port trucks.

I have no doubt that Texas air quality has the potential to improve under Gina McCarthy’s leadership. Her record clearly speaks for itself.  Please join us in telling your Senators that you support her nomination, clean air, and public health protection by filling out a quick form offered for your convenience.

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