Climate change takes focus in former EPA administrator’s FLCC talk

A former administrator for the federal Environmental Protection Agency will give a talk at Finger Lakes Community College Sunday, Jan. 27, as part of the George M. Ewing Canandaigua Forum.

Gina McCarthy, who headed the EPA from 2013 to 2017, will focus on climate change in her talk, titled “Final Arguments in People vs. Planet.” WXXI’s “Connections” radio show host and author Evan Dawson will serve as moderator. The event will begin at 4 p.m. in the Student Center Auditorium at FLCC’s main campus, 3325 Marvin Sands Drive, Canandaigua.

President Barack Obama nominated McCarthy to replace Lisa Jackson as head of the EPA in March 2013. She became the face of Obama’s global warming and climate change initiative when she was confirmed on July 18, 2013, after a record 136-day Senate confirmation battle.

While at the EPA’s helm, McCarthy sought to redefine the “waters of the United States” in the Clean Air Act in an effort to prohibit pollution in upland U.S. watersheds. She finalized the controversial Clean Power Plan seeking the reduction of the use of coal in alignment with the Paris Climate Agreement, and defended the EPA in the early stages of the Flint, Mich. water crisis. Her successor, Trump appointee Scott Pruitt, challenged and overturned many of her initiatives before resigning amid allegations of misconduct this past July.

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