Strong Support for Gina McCarthy as Head of EPA
As we begin to see how the new Congress is shaking out, we’ve also had our eyes on changes in the administration. Even though the president stayed in office, there are inevitably changes from a first term to a second term as cabinet members and advisors shift around. The biomass industry should be encouraged by the announcement of Gina McCarthy as the nominee for U.S. EPA administrator.
McCarthy, if confirmed by the Senate, will make an excellent EPA administrator, for biomass as well as the other renewable energy sources that we work closely with. Her career has the ideal—and unusual—mix of state and federal roles, with time served in both Connecticut and Massachusetts state governments and at the EPA.
This combination of experience will bode well as important issues like the Tailoring Rule and Boiler MACT/Non-Hazardous Secondary Materials Rules are addressed, and, hopefully, resolved under her leadership. The Tailoring Rule has significant implications for federal and state energy policy because it will define how biomass greenhouse gas emissions are regulated. In addition, if biomass fuels are regulated as “wastes,” costly rules—with no public health or environmental benefit—will be imposed.
McCarthy currently serves as assistant administrator for EPA’s Office of Air and Radiation, and in this role she has demonstrated a balanced approach toward ensuring improved public health while giving businesses what they need to prosper. This is especially encouraging for biomass, as our industry is a solution for balancing environmental and economic concerns.
She also has a strong record of bipartisanship, and a history of supporting the development of biofuels and the implementation of renewable fuels standards, which are closely related to our industry.
McCarthy’s confirmation as head of EPA could prove to be a critical step toward a better understanding of biomass and what it does for our nation at the highest levels of government. Biomass Power Association fully supports her nomination, and we look forward to working with her soon.
Author: Bob Cleaves
President and CEO, Biomass Power Association