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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.

Biofuels Sector Pessimistic On RFS Volumes As Waiver Decisions Loom

Biofuels industry groups are expressing pessimism that EPA will preserve biofuel blending mandates in its renewable fuel standards (RFS) program as it weighs waiver requests from the mandates from dozens of small refineries, amid signs EPA is again leaning toward granting refiners’ waiver requests. During July 31 testimony at an EPA hearing in Ypsilanti, MI, on the agency’s proposed RFS blending volumes for 2020, biofuels producers urged the agency to increase volumes to compensate for the coming waivers, to re-allocate...

Biofuels Sector Seeks To Resume Suit Over EPA’s RFS Methods

Biofuels industry groups are seeking to resume proceedings in litigation over EPA’s methods for setting blending mandates for its renewable fuels standard (RFS) program, a further indication of the sector’s pessimism that officials will address their concerns over the mandate volumes lost as a result of the refinery waivers the agency is granting. Groups including the Renewable Fuels Association (RFA), Growth Energy, the National Biodiesel Board (NBB) and others July 30 asked the U.S. Court of Appeals for the...

Trump-Appointed Advisers Back EPA Bid To Ease Strict Cancer Risk Method

Trump administration appointees to EPA’s Science Advisory Board (SAB) are bolstering agency efforts to scale back use of a conservative risk assessment method that assumes no safe level of exposure to certain carcinogens, clearing the way for a less-strict approach that could help justify eased rules for industrial chemicals and nuclear radiation. In a report posted to SAB’s website earlier this month, several of the board’s members who were appointed during the Trump administration generally urged the agency to...


Oil-Backed Group Attacks Legality Of Colorado ZEV Deal With Automakers

The Freedom to Drive (FTD) Coalition, an alliance of oil and other industry groups, is challenging the major agreement inked between Colorado officials and two key automaker groups implementing California’s zero emission vehicle (ZEV) sales mandate in the state, charging it is unlawful because it amends California’s program. The group offers its arguments in a July 29 rebuttal filed to the state’s rulemaking docket, but it is unlikely to sway the Colorado Air Quality Commission from formally adopting the ZEV...

IG Largely Clears EPA Staff In Dispute Over ‘Glider’ Truck Emission Tests

EPA’s Office of Inspector General (OIG) is largely exonerating agency staff from claims by some House Republicans that they improperly coordinated with new truck manufacturers in conducting tests of “glider” trucks, which combine used engines with new chassis, that showed high emissions from the vehicles. OIG’s July 31 report is a victory for those that support continued restrictions on gliders, given that the agency tests showed the vehicles can emit air pollution on the order of 40 times that of...


States Urged To Elevate Equity In Regional Transportation GHG Program

Northeast and Mid-Atlantic states developing the country’s first cap-and-trade program to cut transportation sector greenhouse gas emissions are being urged to ensure that their effort elevates and addresses the equity concerns of disadvantaged communities and areas on the “front-line” of pollution challenges. These environmental justice issues arose repeatedly at a day-long July 30 workshop in Baltimore on the Transportation & Climate Initiative (TCI), organized by Georgetown Climate Center. Poor and minority communities “need to be at the table,” argued Sacoby...

GOP’s Luntz seeks to help Democrats advance climate policy

High-profile Republican pollster Frank Luntz is offering his expertise to Senate Democrats to help move policy to address climate change, arguing a “nonpartisan” solution could garner wide public support despite the current highly polarized environment surrounding climate issues. Luntz, who has done work for a host of Republican candidates over the past several decades, recently changed his mind on climate change and is seeking to help enact policies that will cut greenhouse gases. He also admitted he was wrong 20...

API Pushes Voluntary Methane Program As Alternative To EPA, State Rules

The American Petroleum Institute (API) is touting its voluntary program for reducing methane leaks from gas production as an alternative to regulations being sought by Colorado and other states, as well as a guide for the Trump EPA to follow as it reconsiders Obama-era rules designed to curb drilling-related air emissions. Speaking on a July 30 call with reporters, API President and CEO Mike Sommers touted the success of the group’s Environmental Partnership initiative, which brings together some 66 companies...

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