Air

Tracking the latest agency and congressional debates over rules to cut emissions of traditional pollutants, and a broad range of novel EPA policies including the agency's shift to a "multipollutant" regulatory approach for individual sectors.

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Tracking the latest agency and congressional debates over rules to cut emissions of traditional pollutants, and a broad range of novel EPA policies including the agency's shift to a "multipollutant" regulatory approach for individual sectors.

Industry Groups Back EPA's Science Transparency Rule But Seek Changes

Petrochemical and other industry representatives are reiterating their support for EPA's proposed rule barring the use of science where the underlying data and models are not publicly available but they are also calling for clarifications that would expand the rule's scope, limit EPA's ability to grant waivers, better protect trade secrets and more. Even as environmentalists and other critics renewed their opposition to the proposal, industry supporters -- including the American Petroleum Institute and the U.S. Chamber of Commerce...

House panel advances bill to ease NSR permitting

The House Energy & Commerce Committee's environment panel has approved a bill to ease EPA's new source review (NSR) permitting program, redefining what constitutes a “modification” that subjects a facility to strict permit requirements, but angering Democrats who claim the shift would result in more air pollution. Lawmakers during a July 17 markup voted along party lines to approve H.R. 3128 , sponsored by Rep. Morgan Griffith (R-VA). The bill, as modified by panel Chairman John Shimkus' (R-IL) substitute amendment,...


CARB's Nichols meets with Wheeler over auto GHG rules

California's Air Resources Board (CARB) chief Mary Nichols is meeting with acting EPA Administrator Andrew Wheeler July 17, with their conversation expected to include discussion of the administration's forthcoming proposal to roll back Obama-era vehicle greenhouse gas and fuel economy limits, though Nichols is downplaying prospects for immediate developments. Even so, Nichols told a July 17 discussion on energy policy, hosted by Politico in Washington, D.C., that she is “hopeful” she can now have more “open” discussions with...

Fearing Immediate Harm, Groups Seek Emergency Stay Of EPA Glider Policy

Three environmental groups have filed a petition in federal court seeking an emergency stay of EPA's enforcement waiver allowing production of high-emitting glider trucks, citing the need for “urgent relief in order to avert” substantial and irreparable public-health consequences while also urging that the court consider immediately vacating the policy. “The agency's refusal to implement its own regulations will result in premature mortality on a massive scale and it threatens to undermine decades of progress in combating diesel exhaust pollution,”...


EPA Faces New Wave Of Criticism Over Controversial Science Rule Proposal

EPA is facing a new wave of criticism over its controversial proposal to require the use of publicly available data to justify its major rules, posing an early test for the agency's new acting administrator, Andrew Wheeler, and the extent to which he may be willing to drop or soften a plan developed by his predecessor, Scott Pruitt. It is "unclear if, when or how the [rulemaking] process would proceed," Paul Billings of the American Lung Association (ALA) told a...

Vehicle GHG Rule Backers Brace For 'Rebound,' Safety Claims In Rollback

Environmentalists and other supporters of Obama-era vehicle greenhouse gas and fuel economy standards are bracing for the Trump administration's upcoming rollback of the rules to significantly rely on minimizing the rules' benefits, including by assuming a large “rebound effect” from fuel economy gains and asserting the rules harm safety. The concerns came up as part of a broader July 16 press call hosted by Environmental Defense Fund (EDF), in which panelists cited expectations the proposed rollback could surface within “the...


D.C. Circuit places NSR 'netting' suit into abeyance

A federal appellate court has placed environmentalists' lawsuit against EPA's revised policy on new source review (NSR) emissions “netting” into abeyance, pending EPA's proposal of a rule that would allow project developers to weigh emissions decreases as well as increases when deciding what level of analysis is required in a permit application. In a July 13 order , the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit agreed to environmentalists' request to freeze proceedings in Environmental Defense Fund,...

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