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EPA Celebrates Earth Day 2019 with Video and Events

Administrator Wheeler and Japanese Ambassador Sugiyama Celebrate Earth Day at Event Along the Anacostia River in Washington, D.C.

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WASHINGTON (April 22, 2019) – Today, U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) Administrator Andrew Wheeler released an Earth Day video and participated in an event on the Anacostia River in Washington, D.C. with Japan’s Ambassador to the United States, Shinsuke J. Sugiyama, hosted by officials from DC Water.

During the event, Administrator Wheeler and Ambassador Sugiyama rode aboard DC Water’s recently upgraded skimmer boat, which removes hundreds of tons of trash per year form the Anacostia and Potomac Rivers.

“Since the first Earth Day in 1970, America has made tremendous progress improving air quality, cleaning up contaminated lands, and ensuring our bodies of water are safe for recreation and commerce. We are continuing that progress and working hard to ensure all Americans have a clean, healthy environment and a more prosperous future,” said EPA Administrator Andrew Wheeler. “Today, we were delighted to join with Japanese Ambassador Shinsuke Sugiyama to see firsthand the work DC Water is doing to address marine litter. EPA supports domestic and international projects to reduce marine litter, and we join Japan in making it a priority issue during Japan’s leadership of the G20 Summit in June.”

“This year we are hosting the G20 Summit, and marine plastic litter will be an important item on the agenda.  The G20 environmental and energy ministers will meet for the first time in June.  I hope Administrator Wheeler can attend the meeting and, together with Japan’s Environmental Minister, lead the discussion on marine plastic litter,” Japan’s Ambassador Shinsuke Sugiyama said. “Japan and the US already cooperate globally on the environment.  And I look forward to further cooperation in the years ahead.”

This Earth Day, EPA is bringing awareness to America’s role in addressing water issues—one of the largest and most immediate environmental and public health issues affecting the world right now. From providing access to clean and safe drinking water, to cleaning up marine debris, to improving water infrastructure, the United States can serve as a model and catalyst for addressing these important issues.

Across the country, EPA leadership and staff are participating in events to mark Earth Day. From meeting with water utilities to discuss workforce development issues, to touring a farm to learn about integrated crop solutions and management practices, to highlighting the work being done to restore wetlands, to honoring partner efforts to reduce food waste, these events showcase the agency’s commitment to protecting our land and waterways, abundant natural resources, and unique wildlife so that all Americans can continue to enjoy and benefit from these natural gifts for generations to come.

EPA Administrator Andrew Wheeler's Earth Day 2019 Video Message.

EPA Administrator Wheeler, Japanese Ambassador Sugiyama, and Biju George, Executive Vice President of D.C. Water aboard one of D.C. Water's skimmer boats on the Anacostia River.

EPA Administrator Wheeler speaks at the Earth Day event along the Anacostia River.