Statement by Administrator Regan on the President's FY 2022 Discretionary Funding RequestFri, 09 Apr 2021 12:10:09 CDT
The Biden-Harris Administration today submitted the Presidentís priorities for fiscal year 2022 discretionary spending to Congress. The funding request invests in the core foundations of our countryís strength and advances key EPA priorities, including tackling the climate crisis, delivering environmental justice, and rebuilding core functions at the Agency.
"The FY 2022 discretionary request for EPA makes historic investments to tackle the climate crisis and to make sure that all communities, regardless of their zip code, have clean air, clean water, and safe places to live and work," said EPA Administrator Michael S. Regan. "Today's announcement recognizes that science is at the core of all that we do at the EPA and says loud and clear that the EPA is back and ready to work."
The Presidentís FY22 discretionary request invests in:
∑ Tackling Climate Change with the Urgency Science Demands. In line with the urgency needed to address this crisis, the discretionary request invests $1.8 billion in programs that will help reduce greenhouse gas emissions, while also delivering environmental justice to marginalized and over-burdened communities. Within this investment, an additional $100 million is provided for air quality grants for states and Tribes to reduce greenhouse gas emissions under the Clean Air Act. An additional $30 million is included to improve knowledge of the impacts of climate change on human health and the environment - more than doubling EPAís climate change research.
∑ Delivering Environmental Justice for Overburdened and Marginalized Communities. For decades, low-income and marginalized communities have been overburdened with air pollution and other environmental hazards. The discretionary request directs more than $900 million towards a new Accelerating Environmental and Economic Justice initiative that will help create jobs, clean up pollution, and secure environmental justice for communities who too often have been left behind, including rural and Tribal communities. This includes $100 million for a new community air quality monitoring and notification program and an additional $30 million to enforce existing laws meant to protect communities from hazardous pollution and hold polluters accountable.
∑ Investing in Critical Water Infrastructure and Creating Jobs. The discretionary request provides a total of $3.6 billion for water infrastructure, an increase of $625 million over the FY 2021 enacted level. These funds could be used to advance water infrastructure improvement efforts for community water systems, schools, and households, as well as broader efforts to improve drinking water and waste water infrastructure while creating good-paying construction jobs across the nation and in Tribal communities.
∑ Protecting Communities from Hazardous Waste and Environmental Damage. Preventing and cleaning up environmental damage that harms communities and poses a risk to public health and safety is both an economic and moral imperative. The discretionary request provides $882 million for the Superfund Remedial program to clean up some of the nationís most contaminated land, reduce emissions of toxic substances and greenhouse gases from existing and abandoned infrastructure, and respond to environmental emergencies, oil spills, and natural disasters.
∑ Addressing Per- and Polyfluoroalkyl Substances (PFAS) Pollution. PFAS are a set of man-made chemicals that threaten the health and safety of communities across the nation, disproportionately impacting historically disadvantaged communities. As part of the Presidentís commitment to tackling PFAS pollution, the discretionary request provides approximately $75 million to accelerate toxicity studies and research to inform the regulatory developments of designating PFAS as hazardous substances and setting enforceable limits for PFAS under the Safe Drinking Water Act, and for grants for technical assistance as State and local governments deal with PFAS contamination.
∑ Restores Critical Capacity to Carry Out EPAís Core Mission. EPA has lost nearly 1,000 staff over the past four years, impacting the Agencyís ability to effectively carry out its core duties and functions to protect public health and the environment. The discretionary request invests in restoring EPAís critical staff capacity and programmatic capabilities that focus on protecting clean air, land, and water. Restoring capacity across the Agency will advance efforts to tackle climate change, bolster State climate programs, prioritize climate research at the Agency, and invest in resilient infrastructure across the United States.
These investments are one part of the Administrationís whole of government approach to protect the environment and combat climate change. The priorities outlined in todayís discretionary request ensure the Environmental Protection Agency has the resources it needs to deliver on its mission to protect human health and the environment for all people. In the coming months, the Administration will release the Presidentís Budget, which will present a unified, comprehensive plan to address the overlapping crises we face in a fiscally and economically responsible way.
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