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.

Environmentalists cite Iowa air plan approval to bolster SSM venue fight

Environmentalists are citing EPA’s proposal to allow Iowa to exempt companies from air emissions limits during facility startup, shutdown or malfunction (SSM) as further evidence that the agency is modifying national policy in related SSM decisions, and that litigation over the waivers should be heard in a key appellate court. In a June 24 filing in the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit, environmentalists say that the agency’s June 22 Iowa proposal proves their point that...

Critics Cite New High Court Rulings In Vehicle GHG Preemption Case

States and environmental groups are detailing their arguments against EPA and the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration’s (NHTSA) rule preempting state vehicle greenhouse gas standards, charging the move exceeds the agencies’ authorities and that their case is bolstered by a pair of recent major Supreme Court rulings. Specifically, the June 29 opening brief from the California-led coalition and environmentalists cites the high court’s June 18 rebuke of the Trump administration’s failure to consider “reliance interests” in its immigration policies, as...

Automakers in California GHG deal weigh in on EPA rollback suit

Auto manufacturers that have agreed to adopt California’s voluntary greenhouse gas standards are weighing in on litigation challenging the Trump administration’s rollback of Obama-era vehicle emission requirements, arguing that any court remedy in the case should be “appropriate and achievable.” The June 29 filing from five automakers -- Honda, BMW, Ford, Rolls-Royce and Volkswagen -- says the companies are not taking a position on the merits of the challenges to EPA and the Transportation Department’s rollback rule. But if the...

Farm state governors urge EPA to reject RFS waivers

The Governors’ Biofuels Coalition, representing 22 largely farm states, is urging EPA to reject dozens of small refiners’ applications for waivers from renewable fuel standard (RFS) biofuel blending mandates, warning that granting the requests would further undermine an already depressed biofuels market. In a June 29 letter , coalition Chair Gov. Kristi Noem (R-SD), along with Govs. Tim Walz (D-MN), Kim Reynolds (R-IA) and Pete Ricketts (R-NE) ask EPA Administrator Andrew Wheeler not to grant 52 requests for small refinery...

States, Water Utilities Warn Of Confusion With EPA’s Guidance Proposal

State water regulators and utilities are raising concerns about some aspects of EPA’s proposal to create a central repository for all guidance and to develop a formal process for developing or revising guidance, saying it is unclear which documents would be covered by the rule and that a planned 30-day comment period for guides is inadequate. The proposed rule , published in the May 22 Federal Register , would establish several new restrictions on guidance documents, including required public comment...

District Court Judge Backs EPA On One-Time Air Toxics Rule Risk Reviews

A federal district court judge is backing EPA’s long-standing position that it need only conduct “residual” health risk reviews for its existing air toxics regulations once, rejecting environmentalists’ claim that the reviews must occur every eight years alongside related Clean Air Act-mandated reviews of air toxic control technologies. The June 26 opinion by Judge Vince Chhabria of the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California in Citizens for Pennsylvania’s Future, et al. v. Wheeler could potentially help...


Groups Make Final Pitches To OMB On Oil & Gas Methane Rule Rollback

Environmentalists and oil groups are making their final pitches to EPA and White House officials regarding the agency’s draft final rollback of oil and gas methane standards, including a late-hour battle over the implications of scrapping rules for low-production wells and the legal authority for the rollback. The arguments come in recent supplemental comments to the agency as well as a series of recent meetings with the White House Office of Management & Budget (OMB) as Trump officials prepare to...

EDF targets pipeline approval based on lack of ‘need’

The Environmental Defense Fund (EDF) is urging a federal appeals court to vacate the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission’s (FERC) approval of a St. Louis-area natural gas pipeline, arguing that FERC improperly concluded there is a “need” for the project. The suit is notable because EDF has been relatively less aggressive than some other environmental groups in challenging natural gas infrastructure, and has instead pressed industry to clean up methane leaks from natural gas equipment. Also, the suit underscores the widening...

Ewire: House climate panel poised to release policy proposals

The House Select Committee on the Climate Crisis is poised to unveil its long-awaited set of policy recommendations that could serve as a blueprint for legislative efforts on the issue in this Congress and the next, with environmental groups already ramping up advocacy around the effort. House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) is planning to headline a June 30 event to announce the proposals, along with Rep. Kathy Castor (D-FL), who is chairwoman of the select committee, and other lawmakers. The...

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