Environmental Outlook: Battle Over the EPA

Environmental Outlook: Battle Over the EPA

No fewer than seven Republican presidential candidates have vowed to either cut or close the EPA. As part of our environmental outlook series we discuss why the EPA has become such a lightening rod.

In 1969, untreated industrial waste burst into flames on Cleveland's Cuyahoga river. It ignited not just the river, but a burgeoning environmental movement. The following year, President Nixon established the Environmental Protection Agency. Twenty years later with similar bipartisan support, America's environmental laws were strengthened even more through far-reaching amendments to the Clean Air Act. Now, that kind of broad political backing for the EPA and its mission seems to have all but dried up. As part of our Environmental Outlook series we discuss why the agency and its mission have become so politicized.


Jeff Holmstead

former assistant administrator for air and radiation at the Environmental Protection Agency (2001-05); now heads the environmental strategy section at Bracewell & Giuliani LLP.

Frances Beinecke

president, Natural Resources Defense Council; former member of the National Oil Spill Commission.

David Conover

senior vice-president, Bipartisan Policy Center; formerly at the Department of Energy as director of the agency's climate change technology program and as principal deputy assistant secretary for policy and international affairs; former staff director and chief counsel of the U.S. Senate Environment and Public Works Committee

Robin Bravender

environment reporter, Politico.

Please familiarize yourself with our Code of Conduct and Terms of Use before posting your comments.

Our address has changed!

The Diane Rehm Show is produced by member-supported WAMU 88.5 in Washington DC.