U.S. EPA Chief To Resign

By Agence France-Presse U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) Administrator Christine Todd Whitman announced that she would resign, in a letter to President George W. Bush released May 21. Her resignation will take effect June 27. "With gratitude for the opportunity to serve the American people in your administration," she wrote to Bush, "I hereby tender my resignation as administrator of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, effective June 27, 2003. "It has been a singular honor to be entrusted with the responsibility to lead the EPA in its effort to leave America's air cleaner, its water purer and its land better protected than it was when this administration took office," Whitman wrote. Whitman, 56, who previously served as governor of the state of New Jersey, took the reins at the EPA in January 2001, as Bush entered the White House. She was known as one of the more moderate members of the Bush administration. Still, early on, she had to confront opposition from environmentalists over the administration's decision not to ratify the Kyoto Protocol on global warming, designed to reduce greenhouse gas emissions. Other controversial moves likewise drew environmentalists' ire, including the relaxing of rules governing factory pollution and the development of the so-called Healthy Forests Initiative, aimed at thinning U.S. forests in a bid to protect against wildfires. Copyright Agence France-Presse, 2003

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