With Federal Government Shutdown, Serious Threats to Food and Water Safety


With the clock ticking down to the Oct. 1 deadline, and with seemingly little or no substantive progress made by Republicans in Congress to come to an agreement on putting forth a spending plan for the coming fiscal year, the prospect of a federal government shutdown beginning Sunday morning has become very likely.  In the event of a shutdown, serious and specific threats to food and water safety could immediately arise. These threats include:

  • EPA regulators could be forced to suspend critical safety inspections at drinking water sources, hazardous Superfund waste sites, and chemical facilities. During the government shutdown of 2013, the EPA halted inspections at about 1,200 such locations.
  • FDA inspectors could reduce or delay inspections at major food processing facilities, putting consumers at risk of food-borne illness. During the government shutdown in 2013, about 900 of these inspections were postponed.
  • The EPA would be forced to shut down the $15 billion project to replace dangerous lead water pipesthroughout the country, putting impacted families at continued risk.
  • Federal regulators could be forced to keep from finalizing comprehensive Biden administration regulations on power plants, oil wells and PFAS “forever chemical” pollution, severely threatening water safety.

In response, Food & Water Action Deputy Director Mitch Jones issued the following statement: 

“By driving this country to the brink of a shutdown, Congressional Republicans are proving once again, in stark relief, that they simply don’t care about the health and wellbeing of the American people. Nowhere is this more obvious than in their willingness to shut down critical food and water safety inspections that occur every day across the country. Rather than working with Democrats to responsibly fund the government, Speaker McCarthy and his slim majority are catering to the most extreme right-wing members in an already extreme caucus. House Republicans should be thoroughly ashamed of themselves, and they must be shown the door in 2024.” 

Contact: Seth Gladstone – [email protected]

Sam Schmidt, Carl Redwood Endorsed by Food & Water Action


Food & Water Action, the political arm of the national advocacy group Food & Water Watch, is endorsing Allegheny County Council candidates Sam Schmidt and Carl Redwood.

The organization has spent the past five years building a strong grassroots presence in Allegheny County, working with residents to restrict fracking activities in over 25 municipalities and scoring a major victory to ban fracking in county parks. The group knocked on 40,000 doors in support of Sara Innamorato’s campaign for County Executive, likely more than any other candidate or group in the 2023 primary. 

Redwood is a long-time community organizer and social justice advocate. He supports a ban on fracking in Allegheny County, and more robust penalties for corporate polluters that degrade our air and water. Schmidt is a veteran, mother, and community organizer who will be a strong voice in our fight for clean air and clean water for all Allegheny County residents.

“Food & Water Action is proud to endorse Sam Schmidt and Carl Redwood for Allegheny County Council,” said Food & Water Action Pennsylvania Director Megan McDonough. “Their unwavering commitment to championing clean air, clean water, and a better future for Allegheny County residents make them strong allies in the fight for environmental justice and sustainable progress. Together, we look forward to adding more progressive voices to County Council, equipping the next administration with the numbers needed to create lasting change in Allegheny County.”

In 2022, Food & Water Action knocked on tens of thousands of doors and made nearly half a million calls to Allegheny County voters, helping to elect Summer Lee and Chris Deluzio to Congress. This November, Food & Water Action is looking to build on that momentum and elect champions that will empower the next administration to realize its full potential on environmental policies.

National Environmental Groups Endorse Aaron Regunberg for RI-1


Today, Food & Water Action, Friends of the Earth, Center for Biological Diversity Action and Oil Change U.S. announced their endorsement of Aaron Regunberg for Rhode Island’s First Congressional district.

As a State Representative, Regunberg was among the first state elected officials to speak out against a fracked gas power plant in Burrillville, which was eventually defeated. He also helped fight a proposed LNG export terminal in Providence.

The groups join other climate and progressive groups including Progressive Democrats of America, Climate Hawks Vote, Jane Fonda Climate PAC, and Climate Action Rhode Island. Together, these national progressive environmental groups represent tens of thousands of Rhode Island voters. 

Sam Bernhardt, Political Director of Food & Water Action, offered the following statement:

“Aaron is a climate leader who has gone toe-to-toe with the fossil fuel industry in Rhode Island for years. We will work hard to get Aaron elected so he can represent his constituents and this critical movement against fossil fuels in the halls of Congress.”

Stephanie Kurose, Northeast Political Director of the Center for Biological Diversity Action Fund, offered the following statement:

“Aaron Regunberg cares deeply about solving the issues of eastern Rhode Island communities, from fighting for environmental justice to confronting the climate emergency. He’s exactly the type of bold, progressive leader we need in Congress and we’re honored to endorse him.”

Ariel Moger, Government and Political Affairs Director of Friends of the Earth Action,offered the following statement:

“We are thrilled to endorse Aaron Regunberg for Congress. Aaron is no stranger to holding Big Oil accountable and is not afraid to take much-needed urgent action to address the climate crisis. Rhode Islanders can count on Aaron to be a bold environmental champion and we urge them to support him this September.”

Allie Rosenbluth, Oil Change U.S., offered the following statement:

“As communities across the country experience devastating impacts of climate change and the United States remains world’s the largest expander of oil and gas, it’s clear we need more leaders in congress ready to take on the fossil fuel industry. Oil Change U.S. is excited to endorse Aaron Regunberg, who has the experience and commitment to bold climate action Rhode Island and the country needs.”

National Environmental Groups Endorse Innamorato in County Exec Race


Environmental advocacy groups Center for Biological Diversity Action Fund, Friends of the Earth Action, Oil Change U.S., and Zero Hour are jointly endorsing State Representative Sara Innamorato in her campaign for Allegheny County Executive. The endorsements solidify Innamorato’s status as an environmental champion in a race where the county’s egregious air pollution and the expanding presence of the fossil fuel industry in the region are major issues for voters.

The groups join a number of other environmental organizations already endorsing Innamorato, including Food & Water Action, Conservation Voters of Pennsylvania, Clean Water Action, Climate Cabinet, Jane Fonda Climate PAC, Lead Locally, and Sunrise Pittsburgh – all of which amounts to a sweep of environmental group endorsements in the race.

The endorsements are a testament to Rep. Innamorato’s years as a climate champion. Last year, Innamorato authored and passed the Whole Home Repairs Program, putting hundreds of millions of dollars towards the home weatherization program that will reduce energy consumption, create local green jobs, and repair thousands of Pennsylvania homes. As County Executive, Innamorato would work through the county Health Department to block new fracking wells and other polluting infrastructure proposed within Allegheny County. 

Innamorato’s climate advocacy continues to drive support for her campaign. Food & Water Acton PAC has knocked on 30,000 doors in support of her; Jane Fonda Climate PAC has contributed $15,000; Climate Cabinet PAC has contributed $10,000.

On behalf of the endorsing organizations, Ariel Moger, Government and Political Affairs Director at Friends of the Earth Action, offered the following statement:

“Our organizations are thrilled to announce our endorsement of Sara Innamorato for Allegheny County Executive. Fighting fossil fuels locally is critical to defeating them globally, and electing leaders who will stand up for people and the planet at the state and local level is crucial. We need decision-makers in office who will put communities over polluter profits, and these candidates will undoubtedly do just that.”

Hudson Candidate Ron Bautista Endorsed by National Environmental Group


The national advocacy group Food & Water Action is endorsing Ron Bautista in his campaign for Hudson County Commissioner. 

Bautista has made the grassroots effort to stop the NJ Transit fracked gas power plant a central issue in his campaign, working to educate and engage residents about the dangers of building a major new source of air pollution in Kearny, where residents already suffer from some of the worst air quality in the country.

Bautista has also committed to protect locally controlled and affordable drinking water, and fight for a moratorium on all fossil fuel projects and a rapid and fair transition to 100% renewable energy in Hudson County.

“Hudson County needs bold progressive leadership to stop fossil fuel pollution and ensure safe, healthy communities for all,” said Food & Water Action New Jersey State Director Matt Smith. “Ron Bautista has demonstrated firm commitments to prioritizing the needs of people over the interests of fossil fuel polluters and corporate water profiteers, and he would bring that same energy and dedication to elected office.”

Allegheny County Council Candidates Endorsed by National Enviro Group 


Food & Water Action, the political arm of the national advocacy group Food & Water Watch, is endorsing three candidates for Allegheny County Council: Dennis McDermott (District 11), Dan Grzybek (District 5), and incumbent Bethany Hallam for the at-large seat.

The organization has spent the past five years building a strong grassroots presence in Allegheny County, working with residents to restrict fracking activities in 25 municipalities and scoring a major victory to ban fracking in county parks. 

In her first term on the County Council, Hallam led the charge to pass a ban on fracking in county parks, and also pushed to expand voting access – showing that she is already a leader in standing up for the people of Allegheny County. 

McDermott was previously the Allegheny County Canvass Director for Food & Water Action, giving him direct experience in community engagement. His campaign is emphasizing expanding public transit and holding polluting corporations accountable. 

Grzybek is running for County Council to increase our sustainability efforts, improving local air quality and holding corporate polluters accountable.

“We are thrilled to support these progressive champions as they work to make Allegheny a safer, more sustainable place to live and work,” said Food & Water Action Pennsylvania Director Megan McDonough. 

In 2022, Food & Water Action knocked on tens of thousands of doors and made nearly half a million calls to Allegheny County voters, helping to elect Summer Lee and Chris Deluzio to Congress. 

Food & Water Action has already knocked on 6,000 doors talking to voters about the county executive election. The group endorsed Sara Innamorato in late February.