May 19, 2022

Duckworth Discusses Environmental Justice Issues with President’s EPA Office of Air & Radiation Director Nominee


[WASHINGTON, D.C.] — U.S. Senator Tammy Duckworth (D-IL), Chair of the Senate Environment and Public Works Fisheries, Water and Wildlife Subcommittee, met today with President Biden’s nominee for Director of the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA)’s Office of Air and Radiation, Joe Goffman. During the meeting, the two discussed the ways we can continue to protect the Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS) program and protect our communities from cumulative impacts of emissions to advance environmental justice for all. Goffman’s nomination hearing will be held next week in the EPW Committee. Duckworth is also co-founder and co-chair of the Senate’s first-ever Environmental Justice Caucus.

“It was a pleasure to meet with Mr. Goffman ahead of his nomination hearing to lead the EPA’s Office of Air and Radiation, and I’m pleased he agrees that every American deserves to breathe safe, unpolluted air—no matter their skin color, income or zip code,” said Duckworth. “If confirmed, I look forward to working with him to address legacy air pollution, increase air monitoring and build on ongoing efforts to make environmental justice a centerpiece of the Biden Administration.”

Duckworth has been committed to helping ensure more Americans have safer air and water in their communities. In March, several of her key environmental priorities became law in the Fiscal Year 2022 (FY22) Omnibus appropriations package, including cleaning up hazardous waste sites and tackling contaminated properties by investing in the EPA’s Superfund program and brownfield grants and addressing the disproportionate impacts of pollution on communities of color and low-income communities by expanding funding for environmental justice programs at EPA.

Last year, President Biden signed the historic Bipartisan Infrastructure Deal into law that included Duckworth’s entire Drinking Water and Wastewater Infrastructure Act (DWWIA), which would help rebuild our nation’s crumbling and dangerous water infrastructure. As a result of her leadership, Illinois—which contains the most known lead service lines of any state in the nation—will be able to dramatically accelerate projects to remove dangerous lead pipes and protect countless children against permanent, irreversible brain damage from drinking lead-contaminated water.

Last March, the Senator introduced the Environmental Justice for All Act, comprehensive legislation to achieve health equity and climate justice for all, particularly the cumulative impacts on underserved communities and communities of color that have long been disproportionately harmed by environmental injustices and toxic pollutants.