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Administrator, Environmental Protection Agency – confirmation needed

Michael Regan

by Deedra Abboud in Political
January 2, 2021 0 comments

On December 17, 2020, members of President-elect Joe Biden’s transition team told the press that the President-elect would nominate Michael Regan to serve as the next United States Environmental Protection Agency Administrator.

If confirmed, Regan would become the first Black man to run the agency and would be responsible for helping to advance the Biden administration’s commitment to combatting climate change, promoting green energy innovations, and addressing the effects of environmental racism.

The position: Advises on climate and environmental issues and enforces environmental laws.

Michael S. Regan Regan is a native of Goldsboro, North Carolina.

He attended North Carolina A&T State University, where he received a Bachelor of Science degree in earth and environmental science.

He then attended George Washington University in Washington, D.C., where he received a Master of Public Administration.

Regan lives in Raleigh, North Carolina with his wife, Melvina, and son.

Regan began his career as an environmental regulator for the Environmental Protection Agency from 1998 to 2008.

He then joined the Environmental Defense Fund (EDF), where he ultimately became the associate vice president for clean energy and a Southeast regional director. He remained at the EDF until 2016.

In 2017, North Carolina Governor Roy Cooper selected Regan to serve as the secretary of the North Carolina Department of Environmental Quality.

During his tenure, he launched the state’s Environmental Justice and Equity Board with a charter to advise the Secretary on how best to advance environmental justice and promote community engagement, particularly across historically underserved and marginalized communities.

He also worked to develop the state’s Clean Energy Plan, which aims to reduce private sector greenhouse gas emissions by 2030 and ultimately move towards carbon neutrality by 2050. The plan also outlines recommendations and goals of accelerating innovations in clean energy technologies, while creating opportunities for rural and urban communities across North Carolina.

In addition, Regan oversees the state’s climate change interagency council, which has worked to advance Governor Cooper’s pledge to achieve carbon neutrality by 2020.

While generally favored by environmental organizations, Regan has clashed with the environmental movement.

In 2018, he approved permits for the Atlantic Coast Pipeline, though the project was ultimately canceled.

In January 2020, Regan secured an agreement with Duke Energy for the largest coal ash contamination cleanup in United States history. The company committed to excavating 80 million tons of ash across seven of nine coal ash deposits.

His department also ordered the chemical company Chemours to address and eliminate toxic per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS), which they were dumping into the Cape Fear River upstream of a major source of drinking water.

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