John Beling has been selected by Governor Phil Scott to lead the Department of Environmental Conservation, which is responsible for managing the state’s waste, water, and air quality programmes.
Peter Walke’s resignation as interim commissioner was accepted by Beling on April 15. After serving as commissioner for two years, Walke is now the managing director of Efficiency Vermont, a non-profit organisation that promotes energy efficiency.
Prior to that, Beling served as the Department of Environmental Conservation’s general counsel. She has also worked as an attorney for a number of federal and state government organisations, including the U.S. Department of Justice, the Environmental Protection Agency, the Vermont and Massachusetts attorneys general, the Vermont Department of Public Service, and the Massachusetts Department of Environmental Protection.
The inhabitant of East Montpelier was raised in Framingham, Massachusetts, and went to St. John’s University School of Law and Tufts University.
John Beling will now be in charge of 300 employees who are spread out among the department’s several departments.
They are all people that work here because we have a mission, and they are a highly outstanding group of engineers and scientists, Beling added. It’s a very essential work, and I believe people benefit greatly from it. It’s a good thing that everyone is so dedicated to what they’re doing since there is a lot of labour.
Within the Agency of Natural Resources, the department is one of three. The Department of Forests, Parks, and Recreation and the Fish & Wildlife Department are the others.
Beling listed several objectives for his job as commissioner. The first item of business will be the distribution of the unprecedented amount of federal funds that the department has been given for a range of infrastructure projects, he said.
He’ll assist with the implementation of Vermont’s new environmental justice statute, keep tabs on the state’s response to PFAS in light of recent health recommendations from the EPA, and try to advance efforts to remediate PCB contamination in schools.
According to Julie Moore, secretary of the Agency of Natural Resources, “It’s an enormous book of work, and it’s sort of taking the wheel while the vehicle’s travelling down the highway at what feels like, right now, around 80 miles per hour.” I am appreciative that he was ready to take on this position because it allows me to have someone with that expertise and understanding of these programmes.
Walke, who served as commissioner before Beling, expressed his fervent support for his successor.
“On the environmental front, Vermont has an extraordinary number of opportunities and challenges in front of us,” he remarked. John will be well-positioned to succeed as commissioner given his extensive knowledge and experience working on a variety of environmental challenges.
- ‘People Are Waking Up’: Campaign To Stop New North Sea Fossil Fuel Drilling Broadens
- Parliament Bans ‘Fly Shooting’ Fishing In Part Of The English Channel
- A Country Diary: Every Day, Collared Doves Patrol Our Wakeful Hours
Stay tuned to enviro360 for more infotainment news.