On Dec. 2, the Environmental Protection Agency celebrated its 50th anniversary. Created by President Nixon in 1970, EPA consolidated the environmental responsibilities of the federal government into one agency to more effectively address environmental concerns.
Over the past 50 years, the agency has set a worldwide standard for using scientific consensus as the foundation for regulations.
As the head of the trade association representing the pesticide industry, I know all too well how complex and divisive regulatory decisions can be, yet I cannot overstate the importance of the work that EPA scientists have done to improve our environment.
No matter which party holds the White House, the foundation of EPA is these career-scientists. These individuals bring decades of experience and expertise to the review of chemicals that are designed to protect our health, safety and sustainability while protecting our water and air. Career-scientists provide consistency and integrity to our regulatory process, no matter which party is in charge. Their work should not only be acknowledged but commended on this historic day.
At a time when science seems to be under attack, agencies like EPA continue to do the important work of regulating our products, ensuring environmental quality, and protecting public health. The system is not perfect, but the gains our nation has made in environmental quality are a testament to a 50-year legacy of continuous improvement.
So the next time you get in your car, shop at a grocery store, or work in a garden, think about and be thankful for the work of EPA’s scientists, who have made our lives safer through their work and dedication.