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The Boston Globe

Nation

EPA head Lisa Jackson to step down

NEW YORK — Lisa P. Jackson is stepping down as administrator of the Environmental Protection Agency after a four-year tenure that began with high hopes of sweeping action to address climate change and other environmental ills but ended with a series of rear-guard actions to defend the agency against challenges from industry, Republicans in Congress, and, at times, the Obama White House.

Jackson, 50, told President Obama shortly after his reelection in November that she wanted to leave the administration early next year. She informed the EPA staff of her decision Thursday morning and issued a brief statement saying that she was confident ‘‘the ship is sailing in the right direction.’’

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