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The Obama administration is unveiling final greenhouse gas (GHG) standards for the existing power fleet Aug. 3 that are expected to cut emissions by 32 percent from 2005 levels by 2030, a steeper decline than the 30 percent cut envisioned by the proposed version, due largely to a larger decline in coal use and greater use of renewables.

House Republicans have released several Army Corps of Engineers memos circulated during the development of the Clean Water Act (CWA) jurisdiction rule jointly developed with EPA where the Corps faults the legal and scientific basis for the then-pending rule, potentially boosting pending lawsuits that claim the rule is unlawful.

A Western electric utility is urging the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit to impose an emergency suspension of an acid gas emissions limit in EPA's remanded utility air toxics rule, citing lingering doubts over the fate of the rule following a Supreme Court ruling faulting EPA's initial justification for the rule.

EPA's just-released draft cumulative risk assessment framework for screening pesticides maintains the agency's past approach of grouping substances based on their similarities, avoiding a National Academy of Sciences (NAS) call to shift to a prioritization scheme based on chemicals' health outcomes, according to a former EPA official.

EPA and California officials are fighting environmentalists' suit aiming to force retroactive application of stricter fine particulate matter (PM2.5) emissions control requirements, saying in final briefs that taking the approach sought by advocates would be unlawful under the Clean Air Act and would also be unnecessary for some areas.

In addition to delaying the start of the “interim” compliance period for its final greenhouse gas (GHG) rule for existing power plants, EPA appears likely to include several early compliance periods in the rule, an effort intended to provide a smoother glide path to final compliance in 2030 and greater certainty that GHG cuts will occur in the program's early years, sources say.