US EPA Administrator on 2-day visit to Taiwan
Taiwan News, Staff Writer
2014-04-13 04:38 PM

United States Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) Administrator Gina McCarthy will visit Taiwan later this week to mark 20 years of US-Taiwan cooperation on a wide range of environmental issues, the American Institute in Taiwan (AIT) said Sunday.

McCarthy will arrive at Taoyuan International Airport on Monday and will depart Wednesday. During her visit she will meet with President Ma Ying-jeou and Taiwanese environmental protection officials to discuss environmental protection, said AIT, which represents US interests in Taiwan in the absence of diplomatic ties.

On Monday McCarthy is scheduled to visit Jian-an Elementary School in New Taipei City to inspect a low-carbon classroom as well as an ecological pond on the school campus. While at the school she will also observe a video link-up between Jian-an students and their counterparts at Ben Franklin Elementary School in New Jersey. Later she will deliver a speech at National Taiwan University in Taipei and tour an exhibition celebrating 20 years of US-Taiwan partnership on environmental protection, according to the AIT release.

McCarthy will also launch a new partnership on environmental education and meet with relevant government officials as well as with members of the American business community in Taiwan, according to a statement released by the EPA in Washington. Her visit to Taipei "will advance regional and global cooperation under EPA's 20-year partnership with the Environmental Protection Administration in Taiwan," the statement noted.

McCarthy has worked in a variety of agencies at local, state and federal levels during a 30-year career in public service. Her first position with the EPA was as Assistant Administrator for the Office of Air and Radiation. Appointed to the administration by President Obama in 2009, she has been a leading advocate for common-sense strategies to protect public health and the environment.

McCarthy earned a BA in Social Anthropology at the University of Massachusetts in Boston as well as a joint MS in Environmental Health Engineering and Planning and Policy at Tufts University. She rose to the position of Commissioner of the Connecticut Department of Environmental Protection before switching to the federal side of environment-related service.

McCarthy’s planned trip marks the first time in 14 years that a Cabinet-level officer has made a visit to the island. The last such visit was in 2000 by Rodney Slater, the Minister of Transportation under President Bill Clinton.

Following her visit to Taipei, McCarthy will travel to Hanoi, Vietnam, where she will participate in activities designed to highlight the importance of bilateral environmental protection communication as well as local and community engagement in protecting natural resources.

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