Donald R. van der VaartSecretary

Secretary Donald R. van der Vaart

Gov. Pat McCrory named Donald R. van der Vaart Secretary of the N.C. Department of Environmental Quality effective Jan. 1, 2015.

Since Aug. 2014, van der Vaart has served as DEQ's deputy secretary, and as the department’s energy policy advisor.

Before becoming deputy secretary and energy policy advisor, van der Vaart worked as an engineering supervisor and later as program manager for the N.C. Division of Air Quality. He also teaches environmental policy and law at N.C. State University. His previous work includes scientific research at Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University and at Research Triangle Institute. Van der Vaart also has experience in research and regulatory positions for energy and utility companies in the private sector.

Van der Vaart holds a doctorate in Chemical Engineering from the University of Cambridge (England), a law degree from North Carolina Central University, a master’s degree in Chemical Engineering from N.C. State University, and a bachelor’s degree in Chemistry from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. He is a licensed Professional Engineer and attorney in North Carolina.  He has published numerous technical and legal articles and holds two patents.

On March 17, 2015, Secretary van der Vaart testified to the U.S. House Committee on Energy and Commerce Subcommittee on Energy and Power on the “EPA’s Proposed 111(d) Rule for Existing Power Plants: Legal and Cost Issues.?  You may read the testimony here, and watch the video here.   

On March 24, 2015, Secretary van der Vaart testified to the U.S. Senate Committee on Agriculture, Nutrition and Forestry on the “Waters of the United States: Stakeholder Perspectives on the Impacts of EPA’s Proposed Rule.? You may read the testimony here, and watch the video here (manually skip to the 37:50 minute mark).  

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