EPA 40th Anniversary Conference Set for Friday

St. Croix residents will have a chance to hear from regional U.S. Environmental Protection Agency officials, local government agencies and private environmental groups at three separate forums this week, culminating Friday with EPA’s 40th Anniversary Conference at the University of the Virgin Islands.

EPA Regional Administrator Judith Enck will be in the territory this week to meet with local leaders, environmental groups, and others about the state of the environment in St. Croix and to take part in all three forums.

On Thursday there is a V.I. Recycling Partnership working group meeting from 9 a.m. to noon at the V.I. Department of Planning and Natural Resources in Frederiksted.

The V.I. Waste Management Authority and the EPA are partners in the endeavor, and both Enck and WMA Executive Director May Adams Cornwall will participate, according to St. Croix Environmental Association Executive Director Paul Chakroff.

The discussion will revolve around recycling options in the territory and is likely to get into the current proposal for a waste-to-energy plant, and whether it is better to recycle or burn plastics, or mulch or burn green waste, Chakroff said.

On Friday Enck will be joined in the St. Croix campus’ Great Hall by Delegate Donna Christensen, Gov. John deJongh Jr. and other environmental, government and academic leaders. Topics covered will include EPA’s environmental and public health priorities for the territory, waste management, recycling, air pollution controls, and other pressing environmental topics.

The conference begins at 9 a.m. The public is invited, but registration is required. The full agenda and registration information are available at www.epa.gov/region02/40thanniversaryvi/.

Saturday morning from 10 a.m. to noon, Christensen, Enck and others will host a community discussion on protecting and building a safe environment in the St. Croix Educational Complex Auditorium. That may delve into the nitty gritty of a recent federal consent agreement with the Hovensa refinery involving $700 million in new equipment, fines and supplemental environmental projects, Chakroff said. No registration is necessary.

For additional information please contact Paul Chakroff at SEA at 773-1989 or [email protected]

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