More Information
Scholastic Kids Press Corps
The Scholastic Kids Press Corps is a team of about 50 Kid Reporters around the nation.  The interactive site brings daily news to life with reporting for kids, by kids.

Energy Conservation is Key

EPA Administrator talks green energy with Scholastic Kid Reporter

By Madison Hartke-Weber | April 20 , 2009
Environmental Protection Agency Administrator Lisa Jackson with Scholastic Kid Reporter Madison Hartke-Weber on April 18, 2009. (Photo courtesy Madison Hartke-Weber.)
Environmental Protection Agency Administrator Lisa Jackson with Scholastic Kid Reporter Madison Hartke-Weber on April 18, 2009. (Photo courtesy Madison Hartke-Weber.)

Earth Day and the Environmental Protection Agency are both about 39 years old. They are approximately the same age, because the first Earth Day resulted in the creation of the nation's first agency to protect the environment and public health.

"Our air was so hazy that in parts of our country you couldn't see more than a block or two," said EPA Administrator Lisa Jackson in a recent interview with Scholastic News. "Rivers were literally on fire."

Play Video

More than 20 million people turned out to protest on the first Earth Day in 1970. They wanted more regulation of industry and other polluters.

"No one expected anyone to come out," Jackson said. "Congress listened to the people and literally, within a year, the EPA was formed."

On Earth Day 2009, Jackson plans to testify before Congress to ask for more legislative support. As a member of President Obama's administration, she is asking Congress to approve new laws geared toward clean energy.

Congress has already taken action this year by setting aside $7.2 billion dollars of the economic stimulus package for the environment. The money will help create "green jobs," for example, organic farmers, solar panel electricians, and wind engineers. The money will also fund clean air and water projects.

One of those clean air projects will provide air filters on diesel-powered school buses.

"Kids sitting inside a school bus can face more polluted air than the ones outside," Jackson explained. "We have a filter we can put on school buses to help keep that air clean." The stimulus bill includes $100 million for new filters on school buses.

President Obama is also pushing a "Cap-and-Trade" program, which he says will stimulate the economy through energy conservation. Companies will be able to "trade" their unused energy credits to other companies that use more energy. The ability to trade credits provides an incentive to conserve energy.

"The cheapest way to move to green energy is to not use it [energy] in the first place." Jackson said. "Energy conservation would become much more important. Cap and trade makes it more economically smart to conserve."

Recently, the EPA issued a finding stating that greenhouse gases endanger public health. As a result of a two-year study, the EPA declared that carbon dioxide and five other greenhouse gas emissions are a danger to the public's health.

"This finding confirms that greenhouse gas pollution is a serious problem now and for future generations," Jackson said, adding that young people, like Scholastic News readers, are the ones who need to learn now about how to help in the future.

"It's going to come to your generation to implement the solution that my generation is putting into place right now," she told this Scholastic News Kid Reporter.


Don't miss the Scholastic Kids Press Corps Earth Day report.


Get the latest on national and international events, movies, television, music, sports, and more from Scholastic News Online.

About the Author

Madison Hartke-Weber is a member of the Scholastic Kids Press Corps.

  • Teacher Store
  • The Teacher Store  


    by Howard Gutner

    Volcanoes don't erupt very often. But when they do, they make a mighty noise. Dramatic photographs and clearly detailed drawings bring the reality of a volcanic eruption to every early reader. A fact-filled book that is great for supporting social studies.

    $2.96 You save: 25%
    Paperback Book | Grades 2-3
    Add To Cart
    Educators Only
    Grades 2-3 $2.96
    Add To Cart
  • Teacher Store
  • The Teacher Store  
    A True Book™—National Parks: Grand Canyon National Park

    A True Book™—National Parks: Grand Canyon National Park

    by David Petersen

    With colorful photography, this book describes one of the greatest natural wonders--the Grand Canyon in Arizona's Grand Canyon National Park.

    Completely redesigned for today's young investigative reader, True Books are an indispensable addition to any collection. Each book guides readers through the facts that nurture their need to know.

    Common Core Alignment

    RI.4.10. By the end of year, read and comprehend informational texts, including history/social studies, science, and technical texts, in the grades 4–5 text complexity band proficiently, with scaffolding as needed at the high end of the range.

    $5.21 You save: 25%
    Paperback Book | Grade 3
    Add To Cart
    Educators Only
    A True Book™—National Parks: Grand Canyon National Park
    Grade 3 $5.21
    Add To Cart
Privacy Policy




Here's something interesting from