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NRDC criticizes EPA’s ‘housekeeping’ claim in science rule

The Natural Resources Defense Council (NRDC) in new written comments is criticizing EPA’s reliance on what the agency says is its generic “housekeeping authority” to justify a Trump administration supplemental proposal that would restrict the use of scientific studies where data is not publicly available.

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EPA Says Aircraft Plan Would Force No GHG Cuts Beyond Current Trends

EPA’s just-released proposal to set first-time greenhouse gas standards for new and in-production aircraft acknowledges that the rule would not spur any aircraft emissions cuts beyond business-as-usual trends, an approach that environmentalists are charging is “wholly insufficient” to curb climate change.

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Mixed Labor Reaction To Democrats’ Climate Plans Shows Balancing Act

Labor groups’ mixed reaction to Democrats’ emerging climate change and clean energy proposals highlights the balancing act that the party must perform in demonstrating that such policies will help workers, with Democrats vowing strong worker protections in the plans but some unions raising doubts about the feasibility of the policies.

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D.C. Circuit consolidates suits over EPA HFC leak rules

The court is combining a long-paused industry suit over Obama-era requirements and a new case from states and environmentalists targeting Trump officials’ rollback of those standards.

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Environmentalists outline legal attacks on waste coal MATS rule

Sierra Club and other environmental groups will challenge EPA’s creation of a new power plant “subcategory” under the agency’s utility air toxics rule, and also its relaxed emissions limits.

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States, others seek to re-start coal leasing NEPA suit

A February environmental assessment of the Interior Department’s 2017 decision to resume coal leasing fails to satisfy its requirements under the National Environmental Policy Act, according to critics.

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IG Highlights Pandemic Response, EJ Integration As Top EPA Challenges

EPA’s Inspector General (IG) is adding the maintenance of agency operations during the COVID-19 pandemic and natural disaster responses, as well the enhancement of environmental justice (EJ) efforts across programs to a growing list of the agency’s top management challenges, criticizing recent Trump administration efforts to cut funding for EJ efforts.

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Lawyers Question DOJ Effort To Block Third-Party Mitigation Settlements

Industry lawyers and others are questioning why the Justice Department (DOJ) is starting to press federal courts to block legal settlements with private parties when they include mitigation measures beyond what DOJ would seek in any enforcement deal, with one source calling the opposition “a principle in search of a problem.”

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Biofuels, Oil Groups Float Diverging Input On EPA Fuels Policy ‘Streamlining’

Biofuels groups and the oil sector are offering diverging comments on EPA’s plan to “streamline” its broad suite of fuels regulations, pushing the agency on measures to support higher ethanol blends, steps to protect confidential business information (CBI), the definition of gasoline, and fuel vapor pressure restrictions.

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Additional Research Emerges Linking Poor Air Quality, COVID-19 Deaths

Researchers in the United States and in Europe are continuing to build the case for a strong link between air pollution and worsened health outcomes from COVID-19, releasing new studies that show pollution boosting infection numbers and deaths, while attempting to control for possible “confounding” factors such as population density.

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