Jackson leaves as EPA chief; faced tough fights with industry groups

Environmental groups are praising the work of Lisa Jackson, who announced today that she is stepping down after nearly four years as the Obama administration's chief environmental watchdog.

As EPA administrator, Jackson found herself caught between administration pledges to solve thorny environmental problems and steady resistance from Republicans and industry groups -- who said the agency's rules destroyed jobs and made it harder for U.S. companies to compete.

The head of the Natural Resources Defense Council says there's been "no fiercer champion of our health and our environment" than Jackson. And Democratic Sen. Tom Carper of Delaware, who heads a Senate panel on clean air, credits Jackson for setting historic fuel economy standards for cars and trucks, and for finalizing clear air standards.

But critics like Scott Segal of the Electric Reliability Coordinating Council says Jackson presided over some of the most expensive environmental rules in EPA history.

Jackson, who was the agency's first black administrator, didn't point to any particular reason for her departure, saying she's looking for "new opportunities to make a difference."

%@AP Links

153-a-09-(Bill Becker, executive director National Association Clean Air Agencies, in AP interview)-"in this country"-Clean air advocate Bill Becker says EPA administrator Lisa Jackson accomplished a lot during her time as the nation's top environmental advocate. (27 Dec 2012)

<<CUT *153 (12/27/12)>> 00:09 "in this country"

155-a-10-(Bill Becker, executive director National Association Clean Air Agencies, in AP interview)-"very few scientists"-Clean air advocate Bill Becker says that EPA Administrator Lisa Jackson brought a scientific rather than political background to the job. (27 Dec 2012)

<<CUT *155 (12/27/12)>> 00:10 "very few scientists"

APPHOTO WX101: FILE - This photo April 17, 2012 file photo shows Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) Administrator Lisa Jackson during an interview with The Associated Press at EPA Headquarters in Washington. Jackson, The Obama administration's chief environmental watchdog, is stepping down after a nearly four-year tenure marked by high-profile brawls over global warming pollution, the Keystone XL oil pipeline, new controls on coal-fired plants and several other hot-button issues that affect the nation's economy and people's health. (AP Photo/Kevin Wolf, File) (17 Apr 2012)

<<APPHOTO WX101 (04/17/12)>>

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