UC Irvine professor Eloy Rodriguez has been named to a national panel charged with determining the quality of environmental education in the United States, university officials announced Wednesday.
Rodriguez, a professor of cell biology and phytochemical toxicology, is one of 11 environmental-education experts chosen to serve on the National Environmental Education Advisory Council. The panel was created to assess the extent of environmental education taught today and to recommend improvements.
Environmental Protection Agency Director William K. Reilly said the council would play a key role in guiding the EPA's implementation of the National Environmental Education Act.
"I will give the council's recommendations my full consideration," Reilly said in a prepared statement released in Washington.
In the first year, Reilly has asked the council to recommend a consortium of institutions that could operate a national training center, and to prepare a report to Congress on the present state of environmental education.
Nominees include Michelle Perrault of the Sierra Club national headquarters in San Francisco; educators at the primary, secondary, college and university levels; members of state education and natural resource agencies, and representatives of business and industry.
Rodriguez is an internationally known expert on plant toxicology. He is also dedicated to recruiting more Latino youths into science programs and to encourage many to eventually seek degrees and careers in science and basic research.