Environment & Energy Report

Wheeler Touts Superfund ‘Success’ Before Senate Hearing

Jan. 16, 2019, 3:40 PM

Acting EPA Administrator Andrew Wheeler touted the successes of the Superfund program’s cleanup and redevelopment efforts before a Senate committee Jan. 16 as he makes his case for becoming the agency’s chief.

President Donald Trump nominated Wheeler to become administrator of the Environmental Protection Agency, but Wheeler must gain the Senate’s approval before he can be sworn in.

In his statement to the Senate Environment and Public Works Committee, posted online Jan. 16 prior to the start of his confirmation hearing, Wheeler said the success of the Superfund program may be the best example of how Trump is “focused on putting Americans first.”

If he gains the committee’s support, the full Senate will then need to vote on his nomination.

Wheeler’s predecessor, Scott Pruitt, had made faster cleanup and reuse of Superfund sites an agency priority.

Wheeler’s statement mentions progress at two Superfund sites in Montana, a cleanup plan for the Berry’s Creek site in New Jersey, and a proposed cleanup plan for the U.S. Smelter and Lead Refinery site in Indiana.

Sites added to EPA’s National Priorities List of Superfund sites are among the most contaminated in the country. Wheeler recused himself from working on two sites on the priority list because of his work with companies involved with those places while he was a lobbyist.

To contact the reporter on this story: Sylvia Carignan in Washington at scarignan@bloombergenvironment.com

To contact the editors responsible for this story: Gregory Henderson at ghenderson@bloombergenvironment.com; Andrew Childers at achilders@bloombergenvironment.com; Susan Bruninga at sbruninga@bloombergenvironment.com

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