EPA Administrator Signs Indigenous Peoples Environmental Justice Policy

On Friday, Gina McCarthy, the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) administrator, signed the EPA’s Policy on Environmental Justice for Working with Federally Recognized Tribes and Indigenous Peoples. This policy contains 17 principles to “support the fair and effective implementation of federal environmental laws” in cases where these laws affect federally recognized tribes and other indigenous peoples. In the policy, the EPA recognizes the importance of the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples and commits to providing indigenous peoples with “early meaningful involvement…at all stages of Agency activity.” The policy also encourages the “integration of Traditional Ecological Knowledge into the Agency’s environmental science, policy, and decision-making processes.”