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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.

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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.

States, Environmentalists Oppose EPA Weakening Of Wood Stove Air Rule

Several states and environmentalists are urging EPA against delaying or otherwise weakening implementation of Obama-era emissions limits for wood stoves and similar devices, arguing that it would endanger public health and hinting at litigation if the agency softens the limits by claiming such a move would violate the Clean Air Act. The criticisms respond to EPA’s proposal to provide a two-year “sell-through” period for the devices starting in May 2020, and a related plan to possibly extend this to a...

EPA extends deadline for deciding on SO2 NAAQS revision

EPA is delaying until Feb. 25 its already-missed Jan. 28 deadline for a final decision on whether to revise or retain its sulfur dioxide (SO2) national ambient air quality standard (NAAQS), resuming work on the rule that was delayed due to the lengthy government shutdown. EPA must review its six NAAQS every five years under the Clean Air Act, but routinely misses these deadlines. A review of the existing SO2 NAAQS, set in 2010, was therefore due in 2015. Environmentalists...

Oil, Biofuels Groups Slated To Raise Competing Arguments Over 2018 RFS

Oil and biofuels industry groups are slated to raise competing arguments over alleged flaws in EPA’s 2018 renewable fuel standard (RFS) at Feb. 20 oral arguments over the rule, and the agency’s issuance of several waivers to small refiners from having to meet the RFS’ fuel production mandates has emerged as a key issue. At argument before the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit in American Fuel & Petrochemical Manufacturers, et al. v. EPA ,...

Local California Officials Bolster Vehicle GHG Case With Air Quality Claims

Local air regulators in Southern California are claiming that the Trump EPA's cursory analysis of the conventional emission co-benefits of Obama-era vehicle greenhouse gas standards is “illogical on its own terms,” amplifying legal arguments by states and environmentalists that the agency's decision to weaken the standards was unlawful. The argument is one of several being floated in amicus briefs from various groups supporting challengers in State of California et al., v EPA in the United States Court of...

EPA, Sierra Club Defend Right To Seek Injunctive Relief For NSR Violations

EPA and the Sierra Club are defending the agency’s right to ask courts for injunctive relief that forces facilities to impose air pollution controls for years-old violations of Clean Air Act new source review (NSR) permit mandates, as they fight a utility sector push to rehear a ruling that broadly upheld EPA’s power to seek such relief. The U.S. Court of Appeals for the 5th Circuit in a 2-1 ruling from October in USA, et al. v. Luminant Generation LLC....

Environmentalists Hint At Lawsuits Over Delayed Ozone NAAQS Findings

Environmentalists are suggesting they will sue EPA if the if the agency finalizes as proposed its plan to delay deciding which parts of the country have attained the 2008 ozone national ambient air quality standard (NAAQS), calling the postponement both “illegal” and “inexcusable.” At a Feb. 15 hearing at the agency’s Washington, D.C., headquarters, Sierra Club and others urged EPA to accelerate nonattainment findings, warning the proposed delays are unlawful, even as some states and industry backed the agency’s push...


New York threatens to sue EPA over interstate ozone air petition

New York State is threatening to sue EPA to force the agency to grant or deny its Clean Air Act petition asking for direct federal regulation of air pollution sources in several upwind states that the Empire State says are responsible for much of its problems attaining federal ozone standards. In a Nov. 7 letter to EPA , New York gives 60 days’ notice of its intent to sue EPA in federal district court to force the agency to respond...

Deregulatory Agenda Complicates EPA Messaging On PFAS Actions

The Trump administration's deregulatory agenda rolling back a host of EPA rules appears to be impeding the agency's messaging on its landmark comprehensive action plan aimed at setting environmental protections to address contamination from per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS). While agency officials unveiled an action plan Feb. 14 to tackle PFAS pollution across several media, critics dismissed the plan for deferring a decision on setting an enforceable drinking water standard for the chemicals -- thought by many to be the...

Pitting Sectors, API Urges EPA To ‘Leverage’ Gas In Coal Plant GHG Rule

The American Petroleum Institute (API) is urging EPA to “leverage” natural gas in its proposed replacement greenhouse gas rule for new coal plants -- pitting “clean, reliable, and affordable natural gas” against coal, which the plan seeks to bolster by easing standards for new plants, even though no new coal plants are being planned. API’s Howard Feldman delivered the request in Feb. 14 testimony at EPA’s public hearing in Washington, D.C., on proposed changes to the 2015 new source performance...

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