User login

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.

Topic Subtitle
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.

DOE DATA SHOW NSR HAS LITTLE IMPACT ON PLANT EFFICIENCY, ACTIVISTS SAY

Environmentalists are claiming an Energy Department (DOE) chart showing that coal-fired power plants' energy efficiency has changed little since the mid-1960s undermines EPA and industry arguments that revising the new source review (NSR) air permit program will increase facilities' efficiency. "Old power plants don't change that much in terms of energy efficiency. That's what this document shows," one environmentalist says. "Any efficiency gains are pretty short term." The chart environmentalists are citing was prepared by DOE for EPA officials working...

WATCHDOG GROUPS RAMP UP FIGHT AGAINST INFORMATION QUALITY LAW

Environmentalists and other citizen groups are ramping up their efforts to fight the controversial data quality law, with one group calling for its repeal and another planning to push key legislators to seek a Government Accountability Office (GAO) report on the law's impact on EPA and other agencies' resources. The Center for Progressive Regulation (CPR) says in a recent letter to EPA and the Office of Management & Budget (OMB) that a pending industry challenge of state ozone pollution control...

University Findings On Air Pollution And Drought May Prompt EPA Research

New university research that links drifting air pollutants to drought throughout the West could bolster calls within EPA's research office to study the growing body of scientific evidence linking this pollution to broader disruptions in weather patterns, agency sources say. Government officials say that if research suggesting weather patterns are at risk from transported air emissions is borne out, it could prompt EPA to propose more stringent pollution control measures than are called for in its proposal to curb long-range...

Utility Commissioners Urge EPA To Revise Air Rule To Encourage Renewables

State utility regulators are urging EPA to revise its proposal for controlling air pollution that drifts over state boundaries, calling on the agency to support more emission credits to new power plants that use renewable and efficient sources of energy, such as wind and cogeneration facilities. The argument is detailed in comments submitted by the National Association of Regulatory Utility Commissioners (NARUC) to EPA that support the agency's general approach to promoting efficient new sources of electricity generation in the...

Technology To Meet EPA NOx Rule May Pose Challenges For Utilities

A new emissions reduction technology known as selective catalytic reduction (SCR) that utilities are effectively required to use in complying with nitrogen oxide (NOx) standards for the Eastern half of the country could create unintended air pollution. The problem surfaced last month when a major power company was forced to shut down some SCR units at an Indiana facility and could lead to greater emissions monitoring. One industry source says utilities are "on [their] way to installing hundreds of these...

SEC DOWNPLAYS CALL FOR PACT WITH EPA TO IMPROVE DISCLOSURE SCRUTINY

The Securities & Exchange Commission (SEC) appears to be resisting calls from congressional investigators to formalize a data-sharing agreement with EPA to improve its oversight of corporate environmental disclosure, according to EPA and SEC officials. A top EPA enforcement official says SEC scrutiny of corporate environmental disclosures is not a top priority for commission officials. SEC officials also told Government Accountability Office (GAO) investigators that they see no need to improve the current data-sharing regime. "SEC officials said that they...

EPA, CARB REACH RECIPROCAL DEAL ON EMISSIONS VERIFICATION TESTING

EPA and the California Air Resources Board (CARB) have signed a memorandum of understanding (MOU) that allows each agency to recognize the other's verification of emissions reductions from diesel retrofits and could significantly expand cleanup of existing diesel engines across the country, sources from EPA and CARB say. An EPA source says the June 1 agreement is significant because it gives "much-needed flexibility" to the retrofit industry. At the same time, the MOU provides states assurances that if they follow...

MEXICAN TRUCK CASE INCREASES STATES' MOBILE SOURCE CONTROL DUTIES

The Supreme Court's recent decision allowing Mexican trucks on U.S. roads could significantly increase motor vehicle emissions that states are required to limit, by making potentially sweeping changes to Clean Air Act transportation requirements that previously held both federal and state agencies responsible for the emissions, according to legal experts, states and environmentalists. The case has major implications for what are known as "conformity" requirements under the statute, which direct states to ensure that transportation emissions do not conflict with...

APPEALS COURT'S FOIA RULING MAY BOOST ACTIVISTS' ENERGY TASK FORCE SUIT

A recent ruling by a federal appeals court limiting the White House's executive privilege to withhold documents under the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) may help environmentalists and the conservative watchdog group Judicial Watch force Vice President Cheney to release records about his controversial energy task force. But any victory could be short-lived if the Supreme Court next month finds in favor of the vice president in a related case that will determine whether the administration can cite executive privilege...

EPA REVIVES MULTI-MEDIA MERCURY PLAN BUT CONFLICT MAY STALL RELEASE

EPA staff are considering ways to revive development of the agency's long-stalled multi-media strategy for addressing mercury pollution, with officials debating whether to advance the agency's earlier approach or make significant changes to the plan, EPA and other sources say. But sources outside EPA are not sure the agency will release the national strategy this year because some officials fear it could renew criticism of the Bush administration's controversial plan for controlling mercury emissions from power plants in an election...

Pages

Not a subscriber? Sign up for 30 days free access to exclusive environmental policy reporting on EPA, the Trump administration's deregulatory agenda, and the pushback from the Democrat-controlled House.