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Appalachian Voices Calls On New EPA Administrator To End Mountaintop Removal Mining

Appalachian Voices congratulates U.S. Environmental Protection Agency Administrator Gina McCarthy on her confirmation.

Appalachian Voices congratulates U.S. Environmental Protection Agency Administrator Gina McCarthy on her confirmation.

After more than five months of delay and threats of filibuster, the U.S. Senate today confirmed Gina McCarthy by a vote of 59-40 to head the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. It was the longest delay of a presidential nominee’s confirmation in the agency’s history.

Under President Obama, the EPA has been vilified by the fossil fuel industry and its allies on Capitol Hill who seek to thwart regulations that protect the environment and public health. Since McCarthy’s nomination, anti-environmental forces have blocked her confirmation and compelled her to respond to a record 1,100 questions from senators.

McCarthy, who prior to today’s confirmation held the position of assistant administrator for the EPA’s Office of Air and Radiation, has worked in state and federal government for 25 years and has an established record of working across the aisle to protect the environment. As EPA administrator, she will have the task of implementing the Obama administration’s climate action plan, as well as finalizing several critical rule-makings to which the agency has committed.

Following is a statement from Appalachian Voices Executive Director Tom Cormons:

“We congratulate Ms. McCarthy on her hard-won confirmation, which demonstrates her mettle in facing tough issues with graciousness and fortitude, qualities she will surely need in the months and years ahead.

“We are encouraged by Ms. McCarthy’s understanding of the impact on American families and communities from the air and water pollution that come from extracting and burning fossil fuels, and urge her to bring an end to one of the most destructive industrial practices occurring today—mountaintop removal coal mining in Appalachia.

“We look forward to working with her as she undertakes the central issue of our lifetime as framed by the president—reducing the country’s greenhouse gas pollution while also addressing the escalating impacts occurring right here in the U.S. from climate change.”




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  1. hebintn on July 23, 2013 at 10:50 am

    While she will face scores of demand on her time in the coming weeks, paramount on her list will be addressing factors which contribute to greenhouse gas release. At the top of the list is the use of coal as an energy source. The first thing I hope she does is make sure that all operating coal mines and power plants are within the restrictions covered by the Clean Water Act, and the Clean Air Act. At the top of this list she will find mountaintop removal coal mining as a major offender that must be scrutinized to the nth degree. She and her agency cannot literally ban this egregious form of mining but she can make sure that mines operate in a way that protects environment and people. I wish her good fortune and success in these efforts.

  2. Joyce Compton Brown on July 20, 2013 at 8:32 pm

    Congratulations are appropriate as Ms. McCarthy is well qualified to turn President O’bama’s rather mediocre standing in the ranking of environmental Presidents into an administration which sees the importance of saving our clean air and water for our children even as Republicans clamor for easy or token solutions. With Ms. McCarthy’s strong help, he could become known as the man with courage to save our earth for future generations of Democrats And Republicans.

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