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Democratic appropriators in the House are reiterating and amplifying multiple concerns with EPA’s deregulatory efforts and resistance to Hill oversight, pressing the agency for action or information on numerous topics, including water contamination, toxic chemical risk assessment and agency enforcement.

In response to a federal appeals court remand, EPA is proposing to tighten its maximum achievable control technology (MACT) air toxics limits for 28 types of boilers while weakening limits for six other types, relying in part on counting the “co-benefits” of the rule reducing air pollutants not directly regulated by the proposal.

In a flurry of recent final actions, EPA has completed several Clean Air Act-mandated reviews of sector-specific national emissions standards for hazardous air pollutants (NESHAP) rules that largely leave air toxics risk assessments and emissions limits unchanged, but tighten certain compliance requirements and make other minor changes.

A group of Democratic state attorneys general, environmentalists and a chemical industry group charge in new comments that the agency’s draft evaluation of perchloroethylene (perc or PCE), the solvent widely used in dry cleaning and for other purposes, does not meet statutory requirements in TSCA -- though the groups raise different concerns.

Recent warnings from a federal health agency that exposures to per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS) may worsen outcomes from COVID-19 are driving new calls for EPA regulation of the chemicals in products, though one researcher says states are more likely to act than the Trump administration.

A California appellate court is upholding the state water board’s authority to impose emergency environmental protection rules and water curtailments during times of drought that limit private water rights, a ruling that some experts say is even more important as climate change threatens to bring more frequent and longer droughts.

EPA’s largest employee union is raising concerns that changes the agency quietly made to the metrics it uses to determine when to reopen offices in the midst of the COVID-19 pandemic will make it easier to force workers back to their offices even if virus infections are spiking in those locations.