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The Justice Department (DOJ) is seeking to ease fears that Attorney General Jeff Sessions' recent memo barring third-parties from receiving monetary payments in legal settlements will undercut EPA's popular supplemental environmental projects (SEPs), saying that projects that comply with EPA policy, which already prohibits third-party payments, will not be affected by Sessions' memo.

Environmentalists are urging a federal court to reject EPA’s recent “determination” that changes to California’s rules during the state’s drought did not amount to a change in water quality standards (WQS), in a bid to set a precedent that could expand the universe of state water rules that are subject to mandatory federal review under the Clean Water Act (CWA).

Baby food manufacturer Beech-Nut Nutrition Company is taking the rare step of refusing to comply with a unilateral EPA order to clean up a contaminated property it once owned, prompting a risky legal fight under the Superfund law, though one source says the company's actions suggest an “aggressive posture” that could be emboldened by signs of eased enforcement from the Trump administration.

Nanomaterial users and producers are urging the Trump EPA to further delay and overhaul an Obama administration nanotech reporting rule, arguing that the agency's recent draft guidance on the rule fails to adequately clarify compliance obligations and saying EPA's delays of other Obama-era rules help to justify their request on the nano rule.

The Trump EPA has released updated draft Integrated Risk Information System (IRIS) assessments for two petro-fuels chemicals that include only minor differences from earlier drafts released last year by the Obama administration, a finding that is likely to disappoint industries that have lobbied EPA to drop the assessments.

EPA has released the three “framework” rules to implement statutory changes to address “existing” chemicals under the revised Toxic Substances Control Act (TSCA), though the agency scaled back the final versions of the rules, underscoring industry's influence while drawing sharp criticisms from environmentalists, who suggested they will sue.

Environmental and labor groups are asking a federal court to stay EPA's nearly two-year delay of an Obama-era rule strengthening the agency's facility accident prevention program, charging the delay is “plainly illegal” under the Clean Air Act and would irreparably harm their interests given past agency findings that chemical accidents continue to occur.