Lisa Jackson is leaving her post as administrator of the Environmental Protection Agency after four years heading the agency.
The New York Times led off its announcement of her resignation by suggesting she leaves after not being able to achieve “sweeping action to address climate change and other environmental ills” because of challenges from industry, Republicans in Congress and not enough support from the Obama White House.
The Obama administration is seen as having backed off broad-scale climate change actions spearheaded by the EPA as the ag industry and industry in general have counter attacked with their concerns about regulatory overreach.
Jackson was challenged repeatedly by Congress and often by the Republican majority in the House. In the Times article by John Broder, he wrote, “She was frequently subjected to harsh questioning that at times bordered on the disrespectful.”
It is thought that Jackson is most pleased with one outcome from her four years—beating court challenges from industry that allows the EPA to classify carbon dioxide and five other gases as contributing to global warming and being defined as pollutants under the Clean Air Act. This was why the EPA was able to negotiate new emissions standards for cars and light trucks and is targeting power plants to require reducing greenhouse gas emissions.
There have been a number of proposed actions by the EPA that have concerned and/or angered segments of agriculture during Jackson's reign, and the ag industry is wondering what the environmental and regulatory agenda will be during President Obama's second term.