On February 8, 2022, U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) Administrator Michael Regan announced the appointment of Robin Morris Collin as Senior Advisor of Environmental Justice to the Administrator. This appointment is the most recent agency action in the EPA-wide effort to prioritize environmental justice. According to EPA, “Collin will advise Administrator Regan as the Agency works to advance environmental justice and civil rights in communities that continue to suffer from disproportionately high pollution levels, including low-income communities and communities of color.”
In announcing her appointment, Administrator Regan restated his commitment “to embedding equity, environmental justice, and civil rights into the DNA of the Agency’s programs, policies, and processes, and to delivering tangible results to underserved communities.” According to Regan, the Senior Advisor of Environmental Justice role will be key to ensuring that “vulnerable populations have a seat at the table” as EPA works to “deliver environmental justice.”
Collin, who most recently served as a professor of law at Willamette University, received the EPA Environmental Justice Achievement Award. Environmental justice advocates and members of the White House Environmental Justice Advisory Council have expressed support of Collin’s appointment.
EPA also is working with the Office of Management and Budget to create a new national program manager role for environmental justice and civil rights at EPA, as proposed by President Joe Biden in the fiscal year 2022 budget request.