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May 4, 2022

Groups Urge Swift Confirmation of Dr. Waterhouse and Professor Uhlmann for Critical EPA Offices

Nominees would be overseeing enforcement, compliance, and emergency management if confirmed

Contacts

Erin Fitzgerald, Earthjustice, efitzgerald@earthjustice.org

Washington, D.C.

Environmental groups across the country are urging Senator Schumer to schedule confirmation votes as soon as possible for Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) nominees Dr. Carlton Waterhouse and Professor David Uhlmann. These highly qualified nominees have the broad support of environmental and environmental justice organizations, representing millions of people throughout the country. Filling these positions swiftly is critical to EPA’s mission to equitably protect public health and our environment.

Dr. Waterhouse, who has been nominated to lead EPA’s Office of Land and Emergency Management, has the support of nearly two hundred environmental and environmental justice organizations across the U.S. Dr. Waterhouse is exceptionally qualified to lead EPA’s office responsible for critical environmental cleanup and revitalization programs, including Superfund. He would bring nearly three decades of expertise in environmental law, including vast experience at EPA where he last served as chief counsel and won three prestigious awards. Dr. Waterhouse has exemplified a deep commitment to fighting for and protecting public health, including environmental justice communities who face the worst impacts of legacy of pollution.

David Uhlmann, nominated to lead EPA’s Office of Enforcement and Compliance Assurance, would bring the integrity and experience needed to revitalize EPA enforcement cases, which have been in decline since 2017. As a former federal prosecutor and Chief of the Environmental Crimes Section at the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ), he would bring significant institutional knowledge of EPA and DOJ, along with a reputation for persistence, fairness, and willingness to engage with diverse stakeholders. The 10-month delay in having a confirmed enforcement chief at the agency is unprecedented and harmful for communities who rely on effective EPA oversight.

The following is a statement from Abigail Dillen, President of Earthjustice:

“We need strong leadership now to address environmental injustice, rise to the climate crisis, and strengthen our environmental laws and their enforcement. The Senate must confirm Dr. Carlton Waterhouse and Professor David Uhlmann now. They are critical appointees needed to lead and oversee EPA hazardous waste cleanup and reinvigorate EPA enforcement. Politics should not get in the way of confirming critical leadership required to restore the health of our communities and hold polluters accountable.”

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