In case you missed it, White House Council on Environmental Quality (CEQ) Chair Brenda Mallory traveled to Washington State last week to meet with elected federal, state and local leaders, Tribes, and other community members to highlight opportunities through the Bipartisan Infrastructure Deal and the President’s Build Back Better Agenda to support investments in Tribal communities, sustainable transportation, environmental justice, and outdoor equity.
Select inserts from press coverage are below:
Investing in Tribal and Indigenous Communities
Chair Mallory traveled to Yakama Nation, Washington, where she hosted a roundtable discussion to hear from Tribal leaders and the Columbia River Inter-Tribal Fish Commission (CRITFC) about the importance of a healthy environment, concerns about fish populations, and Tribal priorities for restoration and conservation. She also highlighted the Biden-Harris Administration’s priorities as they relate to Tribal communities, including the President’s Build Back Better agenda and the Bipartisan Infrastructure Deal, the America the Beautiful initiative, and the Administration’s commitment to address long-standing environmental injustices through efforts like the Justice40 Initiative.
Mallory said ensuring a better future for the Columbia River fish stock relates to a number of Biden’s priorities, including strengthening a nation-to-nation relationship with tribes, pursuing conservation work and tackling climate change in communities of color. But the goal of Monday’s meeting was discussion, she said. “Given the special and unique relationship that the tribes have had in this area, I think hearing in particular from the tribes is really important,” she said. She said the rising temperatures impact the water system, and that impact on natural resources is the council’s focus.
One of President Biden’s top environmental officials was in Toppenish to meet with the area Tribal leaders. Brenda Mallory is the chair of the White House Council on Environmental Quality. She hosted a roundtable discussion with tribal leaders from the Nez Perce tribe, Confederated Tribes of Warm Springs, Confederated Tribes of the Umatilla Indian Reservation and the Yakama Nation. They spoke about the importance of a healthy environment, concerns about fish populations and tribal priorities for restoration and conservation.
Chair Mallory also visited the Billy Frank Jr. Nisqually National Wildlife Refuge with Congressman Derek Kilmer (WA-6) and Congresswoman Marilyn Strickland (WA-10) for a guided tour. She then participated in a listening session with Tribal leaders and representatives of the Northwest Indian Fisheries Commission (NWIFC).
Tribal leaders and the Northwest Indian Fisheries Commission joined U.S. Reps. Derek Kilmer and Marilyn Strickland to discuss federal investments in Tribal communities and conservation efforts with Brenda Mallory, the chair of the White House Council on Environmental Quality, at the Billy Frank Jr. Nisqually National Wildlife Refuge on Tuesday, Oct. 5. “We’re very hopeful for this opportunity to work with Chair Mallory and the Biden Administration,” said Willie Frank III, chairman of the Nisqually Indian Tribe. The group discussed the bipartisan infrastructure deal and President Biden’s Build Back Better Agenda to support investments in Tribal communities, sustainable transportation, environmental justice and outdoor equity. “It’s very important for the Biden Administration to have eyes on these assets here, the cultural significance and honoring our Tribal nations. So I’m very honored to be here today. We live in a very busy nation and that means our natural resources are in peril. We need investments to maintain these beautiful assets and understand their historical significance, their economic and cultural significance,” Mallory said.
“To address the climate crisis and confront environmental injustice, we must do far more to conserve and restore the lands and waters that sustain us,” said CEQ Chair Mallory. “The President’s Build Back Better Agenda will not only create much-needed jobs from coast to coast, but it will support the kind of work that the Nisqually Indian Tribe is doing to restore the health of the Puget sound ecosystem.” [Press Release, 10/7/2021]
Advancing the Electrification, Decarbonization of America’s Ports
Chair Mallory also joined Congresswoman Suzan DelBene (WA-1) and Port of Seattle Commission President Fred Felleman on a walking tour of the Port of Seattle and held a media availability where she highlighted key investments that the Bipartisan Infrastructure Deal includes to advance decarbonization, including the electrification of ports and sustainable aviation. The Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act will invest historic funding to reduce congestion and emissions near ports, drive electrification and other low-carbon technologies at ports, and for construction, operations, and maintenance to keep ports running efficiently.
The White House Chair on Environmental Quality is in the Northwest right now, visiting projects that could get a boost from the President’s spending packages. The trillion-dollar infrastructure deal and the larger Build Back Better plan are on hold in congress right now, but what is not waiting is the need for action. CEQ Chair Brenda Mallory toured a Port of Seattle effort on the Duwamish. It’s cleaning up and improving a once polluted stretch of the waterway. “Seeing this kind of work and a project that really it has its pillars built around these key features is just tremendously important.” And Mallory’s tour is not over. Tomorrow, she heads to Tacoma where the focus will be on parks and promoting greater access to more green space.
Port of Seattle:
This week, @WHCEQ Chair @BrendaMallory46 joined state officials on a Port walking tour and held a media availability where she highlighted key investments that the Bipartisan Infrastructure Deal includes to advance decarbonization. More → https://bit.ly/BMalloryHghlts [Tweet, 10/7/2021]
This week, White House Council on Environmental Quality (CEQ) Chair Brenda Mallory joined officials from Washington State on a walking tour of the Port of Seattle and held a media availability where she highlighted key investments that the Bipartisan Infrastructure Deal includes to advance decarbonization including the electrification of ports and sustainable aviation. The Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act will invest historic funding to reduce congestion and emissions near ports, drive electrification and other low-carbon technologies at ports, and for construction, operations, and maintenance to keep ports running efficiently. [Press Release, 10/7/2021]
Reducing Inequitable Access to Parks and Greens Spaces as Part of the America the Beautiful Initiative
Chair Mallory traveled to Tacoma, Washington, which has the largest park access gap of any of Washington’s major cities, to visit Jennie Reed Elementary School with Congresswoman Marilyn Strickland (WA-10). They were also joined by a representative from Congressman Derek Kilmer’s (WA-6) office. While there, she learned about the work that the Trust for Public Land, MetroParks Tacoma, and Tacoma School District are doing to renovate this schoolyard for public use and future plans to address the park access gap. Reducing inequitable access to parks and greenspace is a key focus area of the Administration’s America the Beautiful initiative, an effort that is led by Chair Mallory.
With Congresswoman Strickland, Mallory visited the school to learn about the work that the Trust for Public Land, MetroParks Tacoma and Tacoma School District are doing to renovate the schoolyard for public use. Reducing inequitable access to parks and greenspace is a key focus area of the administration’s America the Beautiful initiative, an effort that is led by Mallory.
Today, the Chair of the White House Council on Environmental Quality (CEQ), Brenda Mallory and Congresswoman Marilyn Strickland (WA-10), will visit Jennie Reed Elementary to tour the future green schoolyard. This schoolyard, to be renovated by Tacoma Public Schools, The Trust for Public Land and MetroParks Tacoma, will offer students and the surrounding community safe, close-to-home green space. [Press Release, 10/6/2021]
Chair Mallory also joined Seattle’s Office of Sustainability & Environment, Seattle’s Finance and Administrative Services (FAS), Seattle City Light, Office of Housing, and Downtown Emergency Service Center to hear about the work the city and its partners are doing to improve energy efficiency, reduce greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions, and increase access to housing. While meeting with the group, she toured the Seattle Justice Center and Hobson Place.
On October 6th , OSE was thrilled to host Chair Brenda Mallory and staff from the White House Council on Environmental Quality (CEQ), along with Seattle’s Finance and Administrative Services (FAS), City Light, and Office of Housing to talk about some of the work we are doing to improve the energy efficiency, and reduce greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions from Seattle’s building stock.
First up was a stop at the Seattle Justice Center, which hosts both the Seattle Police Headquarters and the Seattle Municipal Court. Seattle has been at the forefront nationally to increase building efficiency and reduce emissions in existing buildings through policies like Energy Benchmarking and Building Tune-Ups programs. Check out this Seattle Justice Center Case Study detailing how the building operations team and the Tune-Up Specialist team collaborated to go above and beyond on a suite of improvements to the Seattle Justice Center. CEQ staff then joined OSE, City Light, and the Office of Housing at Hobson Place, a permanent supportive housing building and clinic. This building is using strategies to maximize efficiency, including electric heat pumps instead of fossil fuels, improved insulation, solar, and more, and is on track to be the first permanent supportive housing project in Washington State to achieve Passive House certification.
Seattle Office of Sustainability & Environment:
@WHCEQ @BrendaMallory46 also joined OSE & @SEACityLight at Hobson Place, a permanent supportive housing building & clinic. This building is using strategies to maximize efficiency, including electric heat pumps instead of fossil fuels, improved insulation, solar & more! [Tweet, 10/7/2021]
While in Washington, Chair Mallory also met with Governor Jay Inslee in Olympia, where they discussed climate, environmental justice and energy efficiency.
It was an honor to talk climate, environmental justice, energy efficiency and so much more with @GovInslee in Washington this week. Thanks for hosting me in Olympia, Governor. [Tweet, 10/9/2021]