News Release | Environment America

Government funding bill coverage: Resources and interview opportunities

A new bill that would fund the government through September 2021 and provide accompanying COVID-19 relief is awaiting President Donald Trump’s signature. While direct disbursements to Americans, many of whom are struggling with medical, utility and rent or mortgage payments as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic, have taken center stage, numerous other components of the budget bill will play a starring role for a long time to come. Many of the bill’s provisions will fund -- at varying levels -- key public health, environmental and consumer protection initiatives. The nonprofits U.S. PIRG and Environment America and their state affiliates have been leading voices on -- and drivers of -- policy in these areas for decades. As you continue your coverage of the varied aspects of the 5,600-page legislation, please consider contacting our experts for interviews or background information. Here are the experts available to interview on the these topics, either over the phone or via Zoom/Skype.

News Release | Environment America

Year in review: Environmental victories in 2020

While the COVID-19 pandemic cast a tragic shadow across the United States in 2020, environmental advocates at the national, state and municipal levels were still able to effect change this past year. Highlights included helping to enhance our country’s commitment to conserving land and wildlife, advancing renewable energy usage, decreasing plastic waste and creating cleaner transportation and water. 

News Release | Environment America

Statement: Omnibus spending package fails to deliver on clean water

Congress is ending the year with no major increases to protect public health from water pollution.  The 2020 omnibus package released Monday contains no increase in  either the Clean Water or Drinking Water State Revolving Funds from Fiscal Year 2020 levels. This final bill is a stark contrast to the additional $11 billion for clean water included in the House’s spending bills, which would have greatly improved efforts to prevent sewage overflows and contamination of drinking water by lead and other sources.

News Release | Environment America

Statement: Major deal on federal energy bill moves U.S. forward on renewables and climate action

Congress struck a last-minute bipartisan deal on a major energy bill expected to pass on Monday as part of the omnibus package to fund the federal government. The energy bill includes increased funding for renewable and energy efficiency programs. It also includes a landmark deal to phase out hydrofluorocarbons (HFCs), which are especially potent greenhouse gases. The legislation soon to be heading to the president’s desk requires an 85 percent phase out of HFCs over 15 years, meaning the U.S. would join more than 170 other countries that have already made this commitment. Global phase out on this scale could avoid a 0.5 degree Celsius of warming by the end of the century. 

News Release | Environment America

Statement: President-elect Biden picks powerful advocate for the environment as EPA head

LOS ANGELES -- President-elect Joe Biden plans to nominate Michael S. Regan to head the Environmental Protection Agency. As the leader of North Carolina’s Department of Environmental Quality and a former EPA employee, Secretary Regan is known for his strong focus on science. He has deep experience and expertise in protecting air and water quality, as well as cutting greenhouse gas emissions. 

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