Regan stays, for now, but advocates fear replacement would lack EJ drive

Source: By Inside EPA • Posted: Thursday, February 2, 2023

EPA Administrator Michael Regan says he has no plans to leave the agency despite reports that he is considering such a step but environmental justice (EJ) advocates are extremely worried that should he depart, whoever replaces him would not bring the same commitment to EJ issues as the nation’s first Black man to serve as the agency’s chief.

They are particularly concerned that the administration could tap Mary Nichols, the former longtime head of the California Air Resources Board (CARB) who was in the running for the top slot before then President-elect Joe Biden selected Regan amid heavy opposition to her appointment from EJ groups. Nichols is now director of the Climate Group, a nonprofit that works to cut greenhouse gas emissions internationally. She could not be reached for comment at press time.