The Virginia Department of Environmental Quality (DEQ) yesterday announced the appointment of Renee Hoyos as the inaugural director of DEQ’s environmental justice office. Last October DEQ first announced plans to create an environmental justice office.
Chesapeake Bay Foundation Virginia Executive Director Peggy Sanner issued this statement.
“We are encouraged by the establishment of an environmental justice office at DEQ and hope it will prove a significant step forward in ensuring that Virginia’s communities have a meaningful voice in environmental decisions that could affect them. For far too long, people in many Virginia communities have been exposed to excessive water and air pollution, resulting in health threats and problems.
“Virginia has a long way to go to address past environmental injustices and to institute effective practices that will prevent harm to people and communities from proposed and future projects. The creation of this office is an important opportunity. We welcome the appointment of Ms. Hoyos and look forward to working with her and DEQ’s Office of Environmental Justice to ensure meaningful progress.”