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President Obama Selects New EPA Head

President Obama Selects New EPA Head
Gina McCarthy nominated for position left vacant by former EPA administrator Lisa Jackson

President Obama on Monday announced his nomination of Gina McCarthy for the position of Environmental Protection Agency administrator, replacing Lisa Jackson, who resigned in December, 2012.

McCarthy was most recently the assistant administrator for the EPA's Office of Air and Radiation. She holds a joint Master of Science in Environmental Health Engineering and Planning and Policy from Tufts University.

Obama made the announcement Monday morning, pointing out McCarthy's prior achievements as Assistant EPA Administrator.

Gina McCarthy nominated for position left vacant by former EPA administrator Lisa Jackson. (EPA photo)

"Gina has focused on practical, cost-effective ways to keep our air clean and our economy growing.  She's earned a reputation as a straight shooter.  She welcomes different points of views.  I'm confident that she's going to do an outstanding job leading the EPA," Obama said in a press conference.

Ethanol groups widely approved the President's nominee, many of them highlighting a commitment to support the Renewable Fuel Standard with the next administrator.

"Gina McCarthy understands the Renewable Fuel Standard to be the linchpin to our continued success reducing petroleum use and greenhouse gas emissions," American Coalition for Ethanol's Executive Vice President Brian Jennings said. "ACE members look forward to working with McCarthy as EPA Administrator."

In his comments regarding the announcement, Brooke Coleman, Executive Director of the Advanced Ethanol Council, called McCarthy the "perfect choice" for the administrator position. He said also that she has been an engaged member of the discussion surrounding advanced biofuels and the RFS, noting, "she clearly knows how to get things done inside and outside of the agency."

Tom Buis, Growth Energy CEO, also praised the decision, saying her skills in balancing the country's energy needs with environmental concerns will make her an effective leader.

The Senate now must confirm McCarthy's appointment before she can take office. If approved, she will tackle hot-button issues affecting agriculture, such as the RFS and air and water quality.

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