SELC Hopes for Change at EPA under Regan’s Leadership Based on Work in North Carolina
WASHINGTON — The Southern Environmental Law Center released the following statement by Derb Carter, director of the North Carolina offices of the Southern Environmental Law Center, in advance of the February 3 confirmation hearing regarding the nomination of Michael Regan, Secretary of the N.C. Department of Environmental Quality, as the new Administrator of the Environmental Protection Agency. Over the past four years, the Southern Environmental Law Center has worked with the DEQ to address some of the biggest environmental challenges facing the state and nation.
- Litigation by DEQ and SELC against Duke Energy resulted in the largest cleanup of coal ash pollution in the United States. A timeline of North Carolina coal ash work is available here.
- Legal actions by DEQ and SELC against Chemours resulted in a settlement to stop 99% of toxic GenX and other PFAS pollution from entering surface and groundwater which provide drinking water to tens of thousands of North Carolinians.
- DEQ and SELC are now in federal court challenging the Trump EPA’s decision to unlawfully roll back basic Clean Water Act protections of our wetlands, streams, and lakes.
“We look forward to working with Regan as Administrator at EPA as we have in North Carolina to clean up coal ash pollution, stop PFAS pollution, protect clean water, and address climate change.
“Under Regan’s leadership, we hope EPA will take strong action to protect America’s families and clean water from toxic chemical pollution like PFAS and restore protections to wetlands, streams and lakes that the Trump administration removed.
“Urgent action is needed by EPA because harm is underway from the Trump administration’s removal of Clean Water Act protections—including the loss of hundreds of acres of wetlands in the path of mining near the Okefenokee Swamp and certain lakes unprotected from pollution such as a drinking water reservoir for hundreds of thousands of people in South Carolina.
“During Regan’s tenure, North Carolina’s environmental agency took a position on toxic PFAS pollution that agencies across the country and the EPA should be taking to protect our communities—stopping pollution at its source. A course correction at EPA will be welcome so that the agency protects people, instead of polluters as it did under the Trump administration.”