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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.

EPA Cautions EtO Air Monitoring Data Indicates 'Background' Sources

EPA officials are cautioning that air monitoring near a high-profile Illinois sterilizing facility that uses ethylene oxide (EtO) -- where agency modeling data have indicated the chemical may pose a higher potential cancer risk to residents -- has detected background levels of EtO that appears to be coming from sources other than the facility. With “ambient monitoring it is important to take enough samples that we are able to discern what the levels look like and what they are attributable...




House Democrats float bill to preserve Obama-era vehicle GHG rules

A group of almost two dozen House Democrats is floating legislation that would codify strict Obama-era vehicle greenhouse gas and fuel economy standards through model year 2025, even as the Trump administration hopes to finalize an aggressive rollback of the rules in the coming weeks. The bill , known as the Clean and Efficient Cars Act, was introduced Feb. 5 by Rep. Doris Matsui (D-CA) and co-sponsored by 19 other Democrats on the House Energy & Commerce Committee, according to...

House Hearings To Build Case For Climate Action Ahead Of Policy Details

House Democrats are rolling out a blitz of hearings on the implications of climate change, seeking to highlight such threats in order to build a case for policy to reduce greenhouse gases, while also creating a contrast with the Trump administration on the issue in advance of more complicated efforts to reach consensus on climate legislation. The Feb. 6-7 hearings in two House committees -- which will coincide with a Feb. 7 Senate energy committee session on “energy innovation” --...

Biofuels Groups Ramp Up Legal Opposition To Small Refiner RFS Waivers

Biofuels groups are ramping up their legal opposition against EPA’s issuance of waivers to small refiners from having to meet renewable fuel standard (RFS) biofuel blending mandates, filing a lawsuit targeting the agency’s 2019 RFS volumes rule and separately detailing legal arguments against EPA’s retroactive issuance of waivers. Under former Trump EPA Administrator Scott Pruitt, the agency issued a much higher number of waivers for small refiners than under the Obama administration. Waivers are available under the Clean Air Act...


DOJ disputes right to ‘stable climate system’ in youth climate suit

The Department of Justice (DOJ) is arguing that there is no constitutional right to a stable climate in its opening brief in a high-profile appeal of litigation brought by a group of youth who charge the federal government is violating the Constitution’s due process clause by promoting fossil fuels that cause global warming. Its Feb. 1 filing in Juliana v. United States asks the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 9th Circuit to reverse a November 2016 procedural ruling...


EPA Eyes Rule Defining Biomass Energy As BACT In Clean Air Permits

EPA is considering issuing a rule to define biomass feedstocks as the best available control technology (BACT) for controlling greenhouse gas emissions in Clean Air Act permits because the agency would consider the fuel carbon neutral, though environmentalists would likely offer strenuous opposition to such a rule. Acting EPA Administrator Andrew Wheeler in recent correspondence with lawmakers said the agency could propose such a rule by the end of the year, with possible guidance on the topic coming sooner to...

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