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EPA’s final evaluation of the solvent n-methylpyrrolidone (NMP) greatly expands the list of industrial uses that pose unreasonable risks compared to the draft version, though the final analysis also narrows the consumer uses that pose such risks and maintains the Trump-era policy of not considering risks that could be addressed under other laws.

A federal appellate court in a precedent-setting decision has found that courts can review whether an EPA withdrawal of a proposed Clean Water Act (CWA) permit “veto” violated the Administrative Procedure Act (APA) but has left it to a lower court to determine whether a Trump EPA withdrawal of a proposed permit veto of the Pebble Mine was arbitrary and capricious.

Environmentalists are calling for a series of measures to strengthen environmental rules for the mining sector in response to the Biden administration efforts to bolster the domestic supply chain for rare earth minerals and other crucial materials needed for electric vehicle batteries and other low-carbon energy technologies.

Trump administration alumni and other conservatives say EPA’s decision to move key rules to “long-term” actions in the Biden administration’s first unified agenda creates policy uncertainty though they also say they are not surprised given that many of the delayed items present complex and time-consuming legal questions that are likely to face litigation.

Several House and Senate Democrats are ramping up pressure for Congress to include clean power or emissions pricing provisions in any infrastructure legislation even as talks on the bill highlight questions over whether significant climate related policies will be jettisoned as part of near-term efforts to pass a bipartisan measure.

EPA Deputy Administrator Janet McCabe is touting EPA’s plan to elevate environmental justice (EJ) by creating a new stand-alone EJ office, to be led by a Senate-confirmed official, with greater authority than the current program within the administrator’s office, as officials embark on a stepped-up push to boost staff and funding for such efforts.

California lawmakers have passed their fiscal year 2021-22 budget, but how billions of dollars in approved funding for climate, environmental and resources programs will be specifically allocated will be spelled out in upcoming budget “trailer bills” that will be negotiated by Democratic leaders and Newsom administration officials in the coming weeks.