GRIP Executive Director Appointed to Good Neighbor Environmental Board

GRIP Executive Director Allyson Siwik was appointed in March by U.S. Environmental Protection Agency Administrator Stephen Johnson to the Good Neighbor Environmental Board. Created in 1992, the GNEB is an independent, non-partisan advisory committee that provides advice to federal officials on environment and infrastructure issues related to the U.S.-Mexico border.

Siwik, who now serves as the committee’s New Mex i co/Non-Gove rnment a l Organization representative, has 15 years of experience working with a broad range of stakeholders on such border-related matters. Since 2004 she has served as the U.S. Co-Leader of the New Mexico-Chihuahua Rural Task Force under EPA’s U.S.-Mexico Border 2012 Program. The group facilitates resolution of transboundary environmental issues in the southwestern New Mexico-northwestern Chihuahua area, including air quality degradation from unpaved roads and trash burning, cleanup and proper disposal of scrap tires, and problems related to water quality and quantity. GRIP has been involved in a number of border-area environmental projects, including analysis of copper smelter emissions and potential health concerns from shortterm ambient sulfur dioxide concentrations; analysis of blood-lead levels in children; and coordination of an Environmental Justice Listening Session for the region.

The GNEB submits annual reports to the president and Congress that contain recommendations for action. The eleventh report, released in March, addresses natural disasters and the environment. Hard copies are available through the GRIP office at 538- 8078 or may be downloaded from www.epa.gov/ocem/gneb. The board’s twelfth report, now being prepared, will discuss innovative environmental strategies along the border.

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