A federal district judge has ordered EPA to act on West Virginia's failure to craft cleanup plans for waters with high conductivity, a measure of ionic pollution associated with coal mining and other activities, creating a test for the Trump administration to either impose federal plans or invite another suit that the judge has signaled would certainly succeed.
Observers are questioning the effectiveness of recent Trump administration executive orders aimed at speeding permitting of infrastructure and pipeline projects, including one aimed at “high-priority” infrastructure that appears to break little new ground beyond bipartisan permit reforms already in law.
The Trump Department of Justice (DOJ) is reiterating arguments made by the Obama administration to defend EPA's multi-year renewable fuel standard (RFS) issued in litigation over the rule, citing agency discretion to fight claims from the oil sector that the RFS volumes targets are too high and from renewable fuel groups that they are too low.
Several fuel groups are suing EPA over the Obama administration's 2017 renewable fuel standard (RFS) targets while Democratic senators are querying President Donald Trump over the influence that his billionaire supporter and White House advisor Carl Icahn might have over the program, highlighting lingering uncertainty over the future of the RFS.
Several states and “clean” utilities that generate power from lower-emitting sources than coal are urging a federal appeals court to uphold EPA's cost assessment that justifies its maximum achievable control technology (MACT) air toxics rule for power plants, saying the rule continues to be vital to ensure good air quality nationwide.
The appellate court rejected without comment requests from states and utilities to delay litigation by 45 days due to the potential that the Trump administration could take steps that would moot the lawsuits.