EPA New England to Host Public Listening Session on the Draft Strategy to Reduce Lead Exposures and Disparities in Communities
Virtual Listening Session will be held March 8, 2022
BOSTON – The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) is hosting a series of public listening sessions on the Draft Strategy to Reduce Lead Exposures and Disparities in U.S. Communities (Lead Strategy), so communities and stakeholders can provide their comments on the Agency's plan. As part of this national engagement process, EPA's Region 1 will host a New England-focused listening session on March 8 at 6:00 p.m.
Ongoing exposures to lead in the environment present a health risk to too many people nationwide. Very low levels of lead in children's blood have been linked to adverse effects on intellect, concentration, and academic achievement. The draft Lead Strategy lays out approaches to strengthen public health protections, address legacy lead contamination for communities with the greatest exposures and promote environmental justice.
"Underserved and overburdened communities are often disproportionately exposed to lead, which can cause life-long negative effects," said Carlton Waterhouse, EPA Deputy Assistant Administrator for the Office of Land and Emergency Management. "Today, we are inviting all communities exposed to lead and other stakeholders to share their perspectives so that EPA can ensure that our Draft Strategy to Reduce Lead Exposures and Disparities in U.S. Communities is as comprehensive as possible."
"EPA is very pleased to offer this opportunity for public input on the Agency's Lead Strategy. Reducing lead exposure for all our citizens, especially for children, is especially important in New England where a high percentage of housing stock was built before 1978 when lead paint was banned. There are also communities with aging water infrastructure which includes lead service lines. We are eager to learn from the public how EPA can best use our authority and resources to protect families and communities from preventable exposure to lead," said EPA New England Regional Administrator David Cash.
Virtual public listening sessions are being held in all 10 of EPA's regional offices. EPA New England (Region 1) will hold a listening session on March 8, 2022 from 6:00 – 9:00 p.m. eastern standard time. Registration will be required to attend the event. Registration links to each regional listening session can be found on EPA's website at: https://www.epa.gov/lead/draft-strategy-reduce-lead-exposures-and-disparities-us-communities. Interpretation and disability access support will be provided.
During this event, registered members of the public will have an opportunity to share their comments on EPA's draft Lead Strategy with EPA senior officials and managers. Those interested in speaking may sign up for a 3-minute speaking slot at the time of registration.
Members of the public who are unable to attend this event are encouraged to attend any of the 10 listening sessions or to submit comments via the docket at: http://www.regulations.gov, Docket ID: EPA-HQ-OLEM-2021-0762 until March 16, 2022.
For details on the draft Lead Strategy, the virtual listening sessions, or how to provide public comment, please visit: https://www.epa.gov/lead/draft-strategy-reduce-lead-exposures-and-disparities-us-communities.