Two Plus Two May Once Again Equal Four, Radical Environmentalists HopeBy Charlie Pizarro
It’s no secret: for eight relentless years the Bush/Exxon/Mobil Administration opposed the Center for Environmental Health’s strong public health positions. Lead in children’s products? No problem, they said. Reckless support for all things petroleum? Sign us up, they said. Gutting clean air and water standards? Just do it, they said. Ignoring sound science? We can’t hear you; we’ve buried our heads in the sand, they said. Time after time, the administration came down in favor of profits for big business at the expense of people’s health.
So imagine our surprise to receive an invitation to the White House. We’d just grown accustomed to the perverse notion that our federal government represented businesses not people.
But there it was; an actual invitation to Center for Environmental Health Executive Director Michael Green and a few dozen other environmental leaders to attend a White House forum on Clean Energy and Public Health.
Hosted by EPA Administrator Lisa Jackson and Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius, the event convened 75 to 80 public health advocates, community leaders, experts from federal agencies, and White House officials for a discussion on the lasting public health benefits of a clean energy economy.
Now of course, we have differences with the Obama administration, from offshore drilling to coal to cap and trade. But the fact that the administration is now asking for our opinion and that of other real-live health advocates driven by uncorrupted science, well, it’s cause for hope.
In response, the Center for Environmental Health is now creating a plan to triple the resources we devote to federal policy on toxic chemicals. It’s an exciting time to be a health advocate.
Stay tuned for more news.