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House Democrats Press Wheeler For Answers On EPA's Declining Staffing

Democratic appropriators in the House are pressing EPA chief Andrew Wheeler on what he is doing to shore up the agency's workforce, expressing concerns that agency leadership is not maintaining staff at levels allowed by prior funding laws and that staff departures are jeopardizing environmental protection.

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Democrats Charge EPA Shift Of IRIS Staff To TSCA Violates Spending Law

Democratic appropriators are urging EPA Administrator Andrew Wheeler to restore the Integrated Risk Information System (IRIS) program's scaled-back agenda and return staff that had been shifted to the toxics office, charging their redirection amounts to a cut to the IRIS budget in violation of congressional appropriations.

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Final SAB ‘Advice’ To EPA On Biomass CO2 Conflicts With Agency Policy

EPA’s Science Advisory Board (SAB) has completed its long-pending advice to EPA on calculating biomass carbon dioxide emissions from smokestacks after accounting for forest regrowth, reaching conclusions at odds with agency policy and unable to endorse a cohesive framework for how to assess the emissions.

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Bipartisan House group seeks DOD funding boost for PFAS cleanups

The PFAS Task Force is urging appropriators to provide “robust” funding to remediate PFAS contamination at both active and closed military bases.

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Inslee Blasts GOP Calls For 'Global' Climate Action, Citing Paris Departure

Washington Gov. Jay Inslee (D), who is running a climate-focused 2020 presidential campaign, is criticizing Republicans for simultaneously highlighting the need for greater global action to reduce greenhouse gas emissions, especially in developing countries, while also backing President Donald Trump's decision to leave the Paris Agreement.

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Bipartisan Senate Group Readies New Bill To Address PFAS Concerns

A bipartisan group of senators will soon unveil legislation to address per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS) in drinking water, with Sen. Shelley Moore Capito (R-WV) suggesting support for both technical assistance and an enforceable drinking water standard that takes into account the costs and challenges of sampling and mitigating the chemicals.

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Two Democrats Float Cap & Dividend Bill As Route To Carbon Pricing

Key Democrats in both chambers are re-introducing “cap-and-dividend” legislation that would create a greenhouse gas permit program for “first sellers” of carbon-based fuels while rebating all revenues directly to the public, arguing their approach could be the most politically viable route to passing carbon pricing legislation.

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Partisan Gap Remains On Climate Controls Despite GOP 'Innovation' Focus

The Senate's rejection of the Green New Deal (GND) resolution is underscoring a wide partisan gap on the scope of climate change policy, as Democrats are planning potentially sweeping measures whose enactment could be years away, while Republicans continue to mostly resist any major policy that could be defined as a mandate.

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Despite Past Controversy, EPA Plans Annual Reviews Of IRIS' Priorities

EPA is planning an annual review of its program office priorities for Integrated Risk Information System (IRIS) assessments, a top official told lawmakers, despite controversy that the first such review stalled IRIS' work for months and led to charges that a top political appointee interfered in the review to drop the formaldehyde assessment.

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Environmentalists Hint At Suit If EPA Drops IRIS EtO Value From Air Rules

Environmentalists are warning EPA that any attempt to drop use of its conservative Integrated Risk Information System (IRIS) risk values for ethylene oxide (EtO) when crafting air toxics rules would result in unlawful regulations not based on the “best available science,” signaling a likely legal challenge should the agency proceed with the approach.

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