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Superfund Report - 12/31/2018

  • Court Urged To Quickly Scrap EPA Extension Of Ash Site Closure Delays

    Environmentalists are asking a federal appeals court to quickly scrap EPA's delay of facility closure deadlines in the Obama-era waste disposal rule for coal ash sites, claiming the court's prior ruling that the overall disposal rule is unlawfully weak shows the delay is illegal and countering EPA's bid to have nine months to reconsider the policy.

    1267 words

  • EPA Seeks Remand Of Ash Rule Changes To Address Adverse Court Ruling

    EPA is asking a federal appeals court to remand without vacatur its contested revisions to an Obama-era coal ash disposal rule so the agency can address the court's August ruling finding the original regulation to be unlawfully weak, warning that vacating the rule changes would create an "impossible" situation for regulated facilities.

    1013 words

  • Senate Democrats Join Calls For EPA To Tighten Coal Ash Regulation

    Senate Democrats and environmental groups are using newly released monitoring data from coal ash disposal sites to step up their calls for EPA and states to tighten controls on the waste, and to abandon a suite of proposed revisions they argue would drastically weaken the Obama-era Resource Conservation & Recovery Act (RCRA) rule for the waste.

    545 words

  • States Take Steps To Adopt Stricter PFAS Levels Than EPA Advisories

    Expert panels in Michigan and New York -- two states that are grappling with contamination from per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS) -- say that EPA's health advisory levels for the contaminants in drinking water are not adequately protective, opening the door for regulators to adopt stricter standards than EPA's.

    1915 words

  • Democrats Launch Inquiry Into EPA Approval Of 'New' PFAS Under TSCA

    Even as EPA grapples with how to manage past and ongoing releases of per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS), House Democrats are pressing the agency to explain its actions in approving hundreds of "new" PFAS under its Toxic Substances Control Act (TSCA) authorities before they enter commerce.

    764 words

  • Retail Industry Gives Mixed Reaction To EPA Pharmaceutical Waste Rule

    The retail industry is providing a mixed reaction to EPA's newly released pharmaceutical waste rule, welcoming the agency's decision that most items handled in a reverse logistics system are not solid waste, but opposing the final rule's declaration that prescription drugs sent to reverse distribution centers are solid waste.

    1749 words

  • EPA Scales Back IRIS Assessment Schedule, Creating New Uncertainties

    Following a high-level review, EPA has released a scaled-back agenda of chemicals that its Integrated Risk Information System (IRIS) program will assess over the next few years, providing some certainty after months of limited public activity.

    1473 words

  • New York Again Threatens Suit If EPA Approves GE's Hudson Cleanup

    Top New York officials are urging EPA to require General Electric (GE) to continue cleaning up the Hudson River and threatening to sue the agency if it approves the cleanup conducted so far as complete after the state released a study showing the remediation the company has conducted failed to limit adverse effects of the contamination.

    794 words

  • ECOS Names Former Regulator Donald Welsh As Executive Director

    The Environmental Council of the States (ECOS), the group that represents state environmental commissioners, has named Donald Welsh, a former EPA Region 3 administrator during the Bush administration and Pennsylvania environment official, as its new executive director.

    255 words

  • Wheeler Seeks To Deflect Criticism Over Lead Plan's Lack Of New Rules

    EPA Administrator Andrew Wheeler sought to deflect questions and criticism that the Trump administration's new plan for reducing children's exposures to lead lacks any new commitments to craft enforceable regulations, arguing that the agency's commitments to finalizing rulemaking efforts that are already underway are "new."

    1401 words

  • Trump 'Revitalization' Executive Order Could Spur Brownfields Development

    President Donald Trump has signed an executive order aimed at increasing federal investments in urban and economically distressed communities targeted by state and local officials under the 2017 tax cut law, which could prompt greater interest in redeveloping brownfields in these areas.

    417 words

  • Appeal Of CWA Groundwater Liability Ruling Will Test Circuit Court 'Split'

    Environmentalists are appealing a district court's rejection of their suit claiming the Clean Water Act (CWA) extends to liability for groundwater-borne pollution that reaches nearby surface waters, posing a new test on whether appellate courts are split on the liability -- a division at the center of a potential Supreme Court case.

    771 words

  • Arguments In Key Bankruptcy Liability Case Postponed Until January

    A federal bankruptcy court in Delaware has postponed oral argument until January in a major bankruptcy case that is expected to decide whether parent companies fraudulently transferred assets from their subsidiaries in order to evade billions of dollars in environmental liability at hazardous waste sites.

    423 words

  • Grassroots Group Eyes Reviving Superfund's 'Polluter Pays' Taxes

    A national grassroots citizens coalition is planning once again to push for reinstating long-expired Superfund 'polluter pays' taxes, seeking to press the Democratic-controlled House into action, but one industry source doubts such a measure will secure widespread backing.

    523 words

  • Navy IG Pursuing Limited Investigation Of Cleanup Contractor

    At the request of House Speaker-designate Nancy Pelosi (D-CA), the Naval Inspector General (IG) is pursuing a limited investigation into the Navy's oversight of cleanup and testing work done by a contractor at a former California Navy shipyard, following criminal convictions of two supervisors who falsified radioactive soil sampling data there, according to documents obtained by Inside EPA.

    882 words