Resetting the Course of EPA

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Resetting the Course of EPA

By: George Colvin, CPG, CHMM

Over the first five months of the new administration, EPA Administrator Michael S. Regan has sent nine messages to EPA employees regarding transparency and maintaining the public trust.  The messages to EPA employees are compiled on to a single EPA webpage under the About EPA heading.  The messages to EPA employees cover the following topics:

  • Scientific integrity
  • Commitment to Environmental Justice
  • Transparency and earning public trust in EPA operations
  • Equal employment opportunity
  • Anti-harassment stance
  • Cooperation with the Office of Inspector General
  • Whistleblower protection
  • Reaffirming Freedom of Information Act
  • Commitment to Ethics

The messages appear to be designed to distance the current administration from the former on many of the issues that defined the Trump administration and to address the August 2020 recommendations of the Environmental Protection Network (EPN) in Resetting the course of EPA.  The EPN is a bipartisan network of more than 500 former EPA career employees and political appointees across the country who served under multiple Democratic and Republican administration.

The messages to EPA employees provide valuable insight into the direction of the EPA under the Bidden administration and are being used as a springboard for advancing EPA initiatives such as strengthening environmental justice through cleanup reforms.

Published in the August 2021 Focus on the Environment.

George H. Colvin is a hydrogeologist with over 30 years of consulting experience. Much of his experience has focused on RCRA Corrective Action, RCRA closure, and groundwater investigation, monitoring, and cleanup. He holds a BS in Geology from Ohio University and MS in geology and hydrology from Vanderbilt University. He is a Certified Professional Geologist with the American Institute of Professional Geologists, a registered geologist in Kentucky, Pennsylvania, and Tennessee, and a Certified Hazardous Materials Manager.