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Deaths elsewhere

  • September 19, 2012 - 7:52 PM

Russell Train, 92, a renowned conservationist who played a central role in the creation of groundbreaking laws and effective enforcement in response to rising concerns about environmental protection in America, died on Monday at his farm in Bozman, Md. From 1969 to 1977, as Richard Nixon's first chairman of the White House Council on Environmental Quality and then as administrator of the Environmental Protection Agency under Gerald Ford, Train was among a select group of senior administration officials and congressional leaders who shaped the world's first comprehensive program for scrubbing the skies and waters of pollution, ensuring the survival of ecologically significant plants and animals and safeguarding citizens from exposure to toxic chemicals. Train was widely considered the father of the National Environmental Policy Act of 1969, the cornerstone of all modern federal environmental legislation. Its signature provision was the look-before-you-leap requirement for federal agencies to prepare environmental impact statements before proceeding with any major project. Train developed the idea of establishing the Council on Environmental Quality, a policy office within the White House. He also helped persuade the Nixon administration to create the Environmental Protection Agency, empowered to execute and regulate the nation's new program of safeguarding natural resources and protecting public health. In 1978, Train joined the World Wildlife Fund's affiliate in the United States, first as president, then as chairman and chairman emeritus. He helped transform a small and effective conservation group into a $100 million-a-year global network of researchers and technical specialists, famed for its panda bear trademark.

NEW YORK TIMES

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