The Abbey Newsletter

Volume 18, Number 6
Oct 1994

EPA Assures NYPL Permanence Won't be Overlooked

The following letter, addressed to Paul LeClerc, president of the New York Public Library, is from the Federal Environmental Executive of the EPA, Fran McPoland, who was appointed last fall by the authority of the presidential order on recycled paper. It was read into the Congressional Record by both Sen Patrick Moynihan and Rep. Nita M. Lowey of New York, on or about October 7.

Dear Mr. LeClerc: As the Federal Environmental Executive appointed by authority of the President's Executive Order On Recycling, I am in receipt of your communication regarding the necessity to ensure that the federal government's use of recycled paper not be perceived to be in conflict with P.O. 101-423's requirement to use permanent paper for documents of enduring historical value. I am writing to assure you that there is no such conflict, and to tell you of the steps this Administration is taking to ensure that the recycled paper requirements are not implemented in such a way as to result in the inappropriate use of acidic paper.

The administration is completely aware of and strongly supports the Joint Resolution on permanent paper and its goals. Paper which contains recycled material and is either permanent or alkaline is available for purchase, and it is our intention to continue to use these papers for documents of enduring value.

I will be working with the individual agencies to develop specifications to fulfil the goals of the Executive Order and the Joint Resolution. Executive Order 12873 called for the appointment of Agency Environmental Executives for each Executive department and major procuring agency, in addition to a Federal Environmental Executive within EPA, the position to which I have recently been appointed. I intend to transmit a copy of this letter to all Agency Environmental Executives in order to restate our position that the requirements for use of recycled paper are not to conflict in any way with the concurrent requirement for permanent paper use. Furthermore, I am meeting this week with the Agency Environmental Executives, and I intend to discuss and reaffirm our commitment to the use of permanent or alkaline paper during this meeting. I will be continuing to work closely with these executives to ensure ongoing sensitivity to this issue as we implement Executive Order 12873.

I very much appreciate your interest and concern for the permanence of historical documents, and applaud your efforts to reduce the use of acid papers by the federal government. We fully share your concern, and I look forward to continuing to work with you on issues of recycling and paper permanence.


Fran McPoland,
Federal Environmental Executive

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