County Attorney Press Releases

El Paso Assistant County Attorney Appointed To National Environmental Advisory Committee

The Administrator of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) Lisa P. Jackson has appointed El Paso Assistant County Attorney Cristina Viesca-Santos to EPA’s 12-member Governmental Advisory Committee. The committee advices the EPA’s Administrator on a broad range of environmentally related strategic, scientific, technological, regulatory and economic issues to be addressed in the implementation and elaboration of the North American Agreement on Environmental Cooperation (NAAEC). Committee members serve two-year terms as representatives of state, local and tribal governments. Ms. Viesca-Santos will be representing local governments in the committee. Assistant County Attorney Viesca-Santos was selected to the board for her knowledge of environmental issues facing local governments along the US-Mexico Border. Since November 2000, Ms. Viesca-Santos has served as the Environmental Prosecutor in El Paso County. Under her leadership, El Paso County created the first Environmental Court in the state of Texas. “I feel very honored and privileged to have been nominated and selected for this important task,” said Viesca-Santos. “I will endeavor to bring to light environmental issues we face in our border region as the Commission for Environmental Cooperation works with Mexican Secretary for Environment and Natural Resources and Canadian Environment Minister who are committed to greening the North American Economy,” Viesca Santos concluded. The appointment period runs from October 22, 2012 to October 2014. 

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About the Governmental Advisory Committee (GAC):

As environmental issues continue to be at the forefront of the North American integration process, the U.S. Governmental Advisory Committee (GAC) provides a valuable avenue for the public input. Arising from the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA), the GAC is charged with providing advice on a broad range of environmental and economic issues. The committee helps shape U.S. policies that improve the environment and health conditions of the United States, Canada, and Mexico. The GAC is composed of 12 members selected from state, local and tribal governments.


The U.S. GAC was created in 1994 by executive order, as part of the United States Federal Implementation of the North American Agreement on Environmental Cooperation (NAAEC). Article 18 of the NAAEC authorizes the U.S., Canada, and Mexico to each convene a national advisory committee. Since its inception, the committee has proven to be a valuable asset in the development of U.S. policies on trade and environment. The committee produces letters of advice and reports on a periodic basis.

On the web:

EPA Nomination Press Release.pdf