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Center for Environmental Policy

The Center for Environmental Policy aims to improve the nation's ability to address environmental challenges through effective governance.

Clean Air for All 50 Years of the Clean Air Act

March 31, 2020, National Press Club

To mark the occasion of the 50th Anniversary of the Clean Air Act and the 30th Anniversary of the Clean Air Act Amendments, American University’s Center for Environmental Policy, Center for Environmental Filmmaking and the American Lung Association are organizing a day-long symposium in Washington, D.C.
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Nominations Open for 2020 William K. Reilly Environmental Leadership Awards

Nominate your colleagues for the 2020 William K. Reilly Environmental Leadership Awards.

Awarded to two winners each year, the Reilly Awards recognize individuals from the government, private, academia and non-profit sectors who have contributed to innovation in environmental policy and energy/climate, engaged diverse stakeholders, and helped nurture the leaders of tomorrow. Nominations of state, indigenous, local, corporate and community leaders, from both the US and abroad, are encouraged.

Nominations of state, tribal, local, corporate and community leaders, from both the US and abroad, are encouraged. Learn more about past awardees.

The Reilly Awards will be presented in April 2020, on the American University campus in Washington, DC, along with graduate student scholarships. Learn more about the progress and accomplishments of our student scholarship winners.

Submit your nomination online by December 6, 2019.

Questions? Please contact Danielle Miller Wagner, Center for Environmental Policy, School of Public Affairs, American University at


A Good Life on a Finite Earth wins Charles Levine Prize

Each year, the International Political Science Association’s Research Committee on the Structure of Governance sponsors the Levine Prize. It is named in honour of Charles H. Levine, who was a distinguished member of the Research Committee and served on the editorial board of its official journal, Governance. 

The prize is awarded on the recommendation of a distinguished committee for the best book on comparative administration or public policy published in the previous year. 

This year’s committee was composed of Professors Linda White (University of Toronto, Canada), Kutsal Yesilkagit (Leiden University, The Netherlands) and Robert Cox (University of South Carolina, United States). The Award Committee has selected “A Good Life on a Finite Earth: The Political Economy of Green Growth,” by Daniel J. Fiorino as the 2019 recipient of the Levine Award. 

Conference on EPA and the Future of Environmental Protection

April 23-24, 2019

Following the environmental awakening of the late 1960’s, the US Environmental Protection Agency has helped achieve remarkable environmental progress even as the US economy and population have grown. The Agency has led the world in setting science-based standards and promoting environmental progress through innovative policies, partnerships, and local, regional, national and international negotiations.

Environmental protection in the future, however, may require new approaches, new tools and possibly, new legal authorities.

As EPA's 50th anniversary approaches, this conference will explore EPA's role in leading the nation and the world in meeting future environmental challenges. American University's Center for Environmental Policy and The Washington College of Law Program on Environmental and Energy Law are co-hosting this event, in cooperation with the EPA Alumni Association and the Environmental Law Institute.
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Phil Sharp Delivers Keynote Address at 2019 Reilly Awards

Phil Sharp

Phil Sharp, former Congressman (D-PA) and former president of Resources for the Future delivered the keynote address at the 2019 William K. Reilly Awards for Environmental Leadership, on Thursday, March 21, 2019, on the American University campus.

Congressman Sharp was involved in almost all energy legislation during his two decades in Congress including including oil, gas, and nuclear regulation; automobile fuel economy and appliance efficiency standards; renewable energy incentives; low income energy assistance; electric utility restructuring and the 1990 Clean Air Act Amendments.  

From 2005-2016, Sharp served as President of Resources for the Future--a Washington think tank focused on environmental, energy and natural resource issues. In 2016, the Secretary of Energy awarded him the James Schlesinger Energy Security Medal.

In addition, Sharp taught at Harvard’s Kennedy School of Government and served as Director of the Institute of Politics. He also taught climate policy at Columbia and Georgetown Universities and serves on Columbia's Center for Energy Policy and a member of the External Advisory Committee for MIT’s university-wide Energy Initiative.

2019 William K. Reilly Award Winners Announced

The Center for Environmental Policy has announced the winners of the 2019 William K. Reilly Awards for Environmental Leadership, Linda Fisher and Kevin J. Fay

Linda Fisher formerly served as VP and Chief Sustainability Officer of DuPont, managing sustainable growth, safety, health, environmental, product stewardship and global regulatory affairs programs. Prior to joining DuPont, Ms. Fisher served in a number of leadership positions in government and industry including senior roles at the US Environmental Protection Agency, where she was Deputy Administrator, Chief of Staff to the Administrator and Assistant Administrator of the Office of Pesticides and Toxics. She was VP of Government Affairs at Monsanto and “of counsel” at Lathan & Watkins.

Ms. Fisher currently serves as on the Board of Directors of the Covanta Holding Corporation, and the SC Johnson Company. She also serves on the Board of Trustees of the Lab School of Washington. Ms. Fisher has served on a number of environmental group boards including Resources for the Future, the National Parks Foundation and the Environmental Law Institute. She holds JD from The Ohio State University College of Law, an MBA from George Washington University and a BA from Miami University.

Kevin Fay is recognized as a successful businessman, community leader, and as one of the foremost global environmental policy advocates over the last three decades. As Executive Director of the Alliance for Responsible Atmospheric Policy, he provides critical industry leadership and perspective on the negotiation and implementation of the Montreal Protocol on Substances that Deplete the Ozone Layer and the United States Clean Air Act. The Alliance was the leading industry voice in support of the successful negotiation in October 2016 of the Kigali Amendment to address HFCs under the Protocol. Also, as Executive Director of the Business Institute for Sustainability, formerly known as the International Climate Change Partnership (ICCP), Fay serves as one of the most visible policy voices in the global effort to address the climate change issue. An advisor to significant Fortune 100 industries, he is frequently consulted by governments, industry, nongovernmental organizations, and media representatives on the global climate change policy process. Fay also is active in and around his community. He currently serves as the Vice Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of Alcalde & Fay, in Arlington, Virginia, a public and government affairs firm in the Washington, D.C. area.

2019 William K. Reilly Scholars Announced

SPA Master of Public Policy student and winner of the 2019 William K. Reilly Scholarship, Caroline Nickerson, describes her passion for environmental policy.

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Sabina Vecchi

SPA Master of Public Policy student and winner of the 2019 William K. Reilly Scholarship, Sabina Vecchi, describes her interests in renewable energy.

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Reflection on U.S. Environmental Policy

This video history, produced with support from the EPA Alumni Association, honors William K. Reilly’s tenure as EPA Administrator and his many contributions to federal, state, and local environmental governance.

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Grass cutout of world continents

Environment ·

Book Focused on Environmental Policy and Sustainability Receives International Political Science Prize

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A Good Life on a Finite Earth

Daniel Fiorino, distinguished executive in residence at the American University School of Public Affairs, argues that policymakers need to protect the environment if they want the economy to grow in the long-term.

In his new book, A Good Life on a Finite Earth: The Political Economy of Green Growth, which was published in December by Oxford University Press, Fiorino links academic research with policy analysis.

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CEP News & Announcements

Panelists at conference

Environment ·

Environmental Protection Experts Analyze Challenges and Opportunities for EPA

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Reilly Awardees

Environment ·

Environment Leaders Honored With Annual Reilly Awards

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Children running outside

Announcement ·

Children’s Health and the Changing Environment

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On Campus ·

Climate Change in the Trump Era: A Look at Local Initiatives

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Forest stream

Environment ·

New Survey Suggests Future Directions for the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency

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