February 23, 2024


Taste the Home & Environment

Longtime environmental prosecutor justifies confirmation vote, colleagues say : NPR

The U.S. Environmental Security Agency’s (EPA) emblem is displayed on a door at its headquarters on March 16, 2017 in Washington, DC.

Justin Sullivan/Getty Photographs

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Justin Sullivan/Getty Photographs

The U.S. Environmental Safety Agency’s (EPA) emblem is exhibited on a door at its headquarters on March 16, 2017 in Washington, DC.

Justin Sullivan/Getty Pictures

A bipartisan group of former Justice Division officials is urging the Senate to advance the nomination of former federal prosecutor David Uhlmann to direct a big workplace in the Environmental Safety Agency that fights air pollution by way of the legal technique.

The officials, who labored in senior roles less than the last six presidents and have deep experience in environmental lawful practice, reported a “robust partnership” involving the EPA and the Justice Department is crucial for public wellness and law enforcement uses.

The EPA’s Office environment of Enforcement and Compliance Assurance “shields our communities from dangerous pollution and makes sure a amount-playing area so that unscrupulous polluters do not have a competitive advantage around regulation-abiding organizations,” they wrote in a letter to Senate The greater part Chief Chuck Schumer, D-NY, and Senate Minority Chief Mitch McConnell, R-KY.

Uhlmann, who served for 17 many years as a federal prosecutor concentrated on environmental problems right before becoming a law professor at the University of Michigan and major the the Environmental Crimes Challenge, “will give honest and principled leadership” to that business office, the officials wrote.

All through his tenure at Justice, Uhlmann prosecuted violators of the Clear Air Act, Clean up Water Act, and the Source Conservation and Recovery Act.

He led quite a few instances that rose to national prominence, including a felony demo that targeted on citizens of West Memphis, who lived subsequent to a hazardous waste site for many years. Uhlmann also tried using a circumstance in Idaho, where a 20-year-outdated endured long term brain destruction just after his company compelled him to illegally dispose of cyanide waste with no correct safety equipment.

“I have devoted my occupation to searching for justice for communities exposed to hazardous pollution and guaranteeing that all People in america can breathe clear air and consume cleanse h2o,” Uhlmann testified previous calendar year. “Our nation’s environmental regulations deliver extraordinary applications for enhancing the life of hard working People in america and meeting our obligations as stewards of the environment for foreseeable future generations.”

Earlier this thirty day period, in partnership with the EPA, the DOJ released a new place of work of environmental justice. Lawyer General Merrick Garland said the unit would “prioritize the conditions that will have the finest effects on the communities most overburdened by environmental damage.”

The White Dwelling formally nominated Uhlmann for the EPA submit in June 2021. Advocates want to see the Senate act shortly in advance of it breaks for midterm election campaigns and turns to other priorities.