Note: This also doubles up as a press release. Please use quotes from these if you are looking for a response from the group.
Today’s resignation of EPA Region 5 political appointee Susan Hedman, provides a tiny ray of hope for EPA’s many outstanding scientists and engineers, who desperately want to do their jobs protecting the environment and public health– but are repeatedly hamstrung by incompetent and uncaring management.
Last weekend we argued:
Hedman worked hand in hand with MDEQ to cover up Flint’s water woes and evade accountability for the growing disaster. EPA knew about MDEQ’s illegal actions since at least April 2015, and did nothing to protect Flint residents. Hedman’s actions actively aided, abetted and emboldened the MDEQ, in their efforts to deny their epic blunder…Hedman also personally misled Michigan’s politicians, who were demanding straight answers about the situation in Flint.
Over the last ten years Americans have been increasingly frustrated by an EPA that protects employees who get paid to watch pornography, repeatedly engage in sexual harassment, retaliates against whistleblowers, and hands out “Gold Medal” awards after an incident that lead-poisoned hundreds (and perhaps thousands) of D.C. children.
What can get you fired at the U.S. EPA? Doing your job. Like Mr. Miguel Del Toral, my friend Dr. Susan Richardson and countless others. Our U.S. EPA and the Centers for Disease Control (CDC), currently epitomize the “human perversion of natural selection” at government agencies, which retains unethical cowards and destroys heroic actors.
While Governor Snyder is certainly guilty of being overly trusting of both MDEQ and EPA employees, and those out of their mind with anger are certainly justified, he did deliver a sincere apology for his employee’s and administrations misdeeds. He also released his e-mails, unlike EPA who redacted and covered up damaging information in response to a Guardian FOIA. And being a government agency means never having to say you are sorry. Act only in response to public ridicule, and even then, only to buy time and allow public scrutiny to fade.
Without a sincere bipartisan effort to get true climate change with our badly broken public health and science agencies, expect more Flints in our future—completely undetected, but no less devastating in harm to our most vulnerable.
EPA’s Press Release in response to the Flint Water Crisis
Author: Dr. Marc Edwards