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Air

INHOFE FIRES BACK AT DEMOCRATS IN CASE CHALLENGING BUSH NSR REFORMS

Senate environment committee Chairman James Inhofe (R-OK) is attacking recent Democratic legal arguments challenging the Bush administration's new source review (NSR) reforms, arguing in a new brief that Congress never intended to regulate existing power plants under the NSR program.

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JUDGES REJECT ACTIVISTS' EFFORT TO BROADEN SCOPE OF BUSH NSR REFORM

In one of the first legal decisions on the issue, EPA's Environmental Appeals Board (EAB) has rebuffed an environmental group's effort to seek upgraded pollution controls at a power plant using a revised definition of what constitutes an "emissions unit" under the Bush administration's 2002 new source review (NSR) reforms.

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EPA RELEASES GUIDE ON SIP CREDIT FOR RENEWABLE, EFFICIENCY PROJECTS

A new EPA guidance outlines how states can earn credit in their state implementation plans (SIPs) for energy-sector projects that promote renewable resources and efficiency, providing a boon for states that have been seeking ways to promote such efforts, according to state sources familiar with the Aug. 5 document.

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ERRORS DELAY PUBLICATION OF MAJOR AIR TOXICS RULES BY MONTHS

Minor errors are causing lengthy delays in promulgating at least two court-ordered air toxics rules, delaying industry compliance and impeding litigation.

While EPA Administrator Mike Leavitt signed both rules in February -- in time to meet the court-ordered deadlines -- the air rule for plywood manufacturers was not published until July 30 and the toxics rule for boilers has yet to be published in the Federal Register. However, EPA posted both regulations on its website and issued press releases when Leavitt signed them.

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CHEMICAL INDUSTRY CITES 2003 CASE TO PUSH EPA EMISSIONS RULE DELAY

A group of chemical companies is citing the precedent set by a 2003 appellate ruling to urge EPA to delay implementation of part of a major air toxics rule and conduct an administrative review of the measure even as the agency continues settlement talks with the industry over the rule.

The Aug. 11 petition, filed by Clariant America, Eastman Chemical Company and Rohm & Haas Company, asks EPA to stay the application of the leak detection and repair (LDAR) requirements of the miscellaneous organic national emissions standards for hazardous air pollution (MON) rule.

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ACTIVISTS PAVE WAY FOR LITIGATION OVER STATE RULES ON 'UPSET' EMISSIONS

Environmentalists say they may file a lawsuit that could force EPA to overturn state rules on infrequent, large-scale industrial releases known as "upset" emissions, after one activist group issued a report charging that more than half of all states illegally exempt these events from enforcement under the Clean Air Act.

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MISSOURI CITY'S VOTERS REJECT PLAN TO BUILD COAL-FIRED POWER PLANT

Voters in the Ozark Mountain city of of Springfield, MO, this month rejected a plan by its municipal utility company to build a new coal-fired power plant to satisfy the growing energy needs of the community, following a campaign launched by the local Sierra Club that urged voters to reject increased use of the fossil fuel.

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INDUSTRY PREPARES TO FIGHT LANDMARK COLORADO RENEWABLE ENERGY PLAN

Colorado industry officials are planning an aggressive, multi-million dollar campaign to defeat the nation's first-ever state ballot initiative setting strict renewable energy standards, a referendum supporters and opponents agree could be the start of a successful new tactic to bypass state legislatures that oppose strict standards.

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ENERGY, CONSERVATION MAY MAKE COLORADO KEY ELECTION BATTLEGROUND

Environmentalists may target Colorado as a newly emerging swing state in this year's presidential election, hoping to sway hunting and fishing groups by campaigning against the Bush administration's policies on natural resources.

At the same time, environmental issues are rising to the forefront in the presidential, Senate and House races in the state, due in part to a local ballot initiative on renewable energy.

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FEDERAL AGENCIES PURSUE NATIONAL POLICY TO REDUCE TRUCK-STOP IDLING

EPA is working with other government agencies to recommend new policies for reducing idling at truck stops in an effort to streamline what truckers now say is a confusing patchwork of regulations that differ from state to state. Idling reduction is pegged as a major environmental and energy issue, because idling trucks waste fuel and pump unnecessary pollution into the air.

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