Don’t Play Politics With Clean Air at South Coast AQMD Executive Officer Job On the Line This Friday

The fight for clean air just got real. On Friday, the South Coast Air Quality Management District Governing Board will consider the ouster of Executive Officer Dr. Barry Wallerstein. The Coalition for Clean Air is greatly concerned about the future of air quality in the region and the motives behind such a move.

Dr. Barry R. Wallerstein has been with AQMD since 1984 and has been the Executive Officer since 1997. Under his watch, days exceeding the 2008 federal ozone standard have dropped by one third. Today, for the first time, new clean air technologies provide us a viable path to meeting air quality standards.

The AQMD board has a history of being a non-partisan body committed to protecting public health by finding practical solutions to Southern California’s notoriously poor air quality. Both Republican and Democratic board members have made it a priority to move clean air progress forward in a way that makes sense for everyone. We hope that the Capitol Weekly is wrong in their assertion that the board has become a political hot potato.

Experienced, effective, and skilled public servants don’t come along every day. While we understand and appreciate the fact that the board has every right to make personnel decisions under their purview, Dr. Wallerstein has neither been told what he’s done wrong nor given an opportunity to improve his job performance before being dismissed.

AQMD has a responsibility to make sure Southern Californians breathe clean air. The agency needs to be unwavering in their focus and commitment to that goal.

The AQMD Board Meeting is at 9 AM at AQMD Headquarters at 21865 Copley Drive – Diamond Bar, CA 91765.

4 thoughts on “Don’t Play Politics With Clean Air at South Coast AQMD Executive Officer Job On the Line This Friday

  1. Frank Peters says:

    The same day that news of this political hatchet-job leaked, Oregon’s top air quality executive stepped down. What a day!

    I moved to Portland calling myself an “air pollution refugee,” only to discover terrible toxic chemicals air pollution here.

    Someone with Barry’s qualifications, he could write his own ticket – here’s hoping he has a hankering for the Pacific NW.

  2. David Czamanske says:

    Indeed! The first priority of the agency should be to work towards ensuring their is clean air for the residents of the Sputhern California.

  3. wafaa says:

    I met Dr. Barry Wallerstein at a meeting in Southern California ten years ago. The reason I have been work on environment issues is because of him. He gave me the empowerment to dictate these years. I have done his experiment several times, that is using white piece of paper with clue! We have used recently used it on Aviation Fuel over our homes in the Bay Area. In one day we had several papers on people home roof in East Bay, it was black as he did in southern Calif. I appreciate this lesson and I will always respect him for everything he tried to do for our communities.

  4. Henry Fung says:

    Indeed, this is more troubling than the situation at the Coastal Commission with Dr. Lester, since in Dr. Lester’s case there were many closed session meetings previous to this, The worst part of putting Dr. Wallerstein under a cloud is the impact it has on staff morale, as skilled technical experts may decide that their bosses no longer support their work and head for the exits, creating a brain drain that helps no one.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *