Biden to sign order with 'Environmental Justice' being the top priority
According to the White House, President Joe Biden planned to sign an executive order on April 21st to make "environmental justice" the main goal of federal agencies. The Biden administration aims to address the issue of disproportionate exposure to pollution and environmental damage among individuals of different races, ethnicities, and economic statuses. The president seeks to differentiate his environmental agenda from that of Republican House Speaker Kevin McCarthy, who has proposed reducing regulations on oil production to lower energy costs. The Biden administration argues that the GOP's policies would only benefit profitable oil companies and allow China to take over the renewable energy sector.
The White House stated that the executive order would enable executive branch agencies to employ scientific research and data to comprehend the adverse health effects of pollution on individuals. Moreover, the order would create the White House Office of Environmental Justice, which would coordinate government initiatives. As per the order, federal agencies would be obligated to inform nearby communities if a federal facility releases toxic substances.
Last year, the Environmental Protection Agency established its Office of Environmental Justice and External Civil Rights, combining three EPA programs to oversee a portion of the $60 billion investment in environmental justice initiatives created by the Inflation Reduction Act passed by Democrats. The White House claims that the executive order is part of the most ambitious environmental justice plan in US history.
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