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New York, Connecticut signal push to address PFAS

The Empire State is poised to propose strictest-in-the nation standards for the two most common PFAS while the Constitution State is creating a workgroup to study PFAS issues.

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DOJ Cites High Court Auer Ruling In Defending Vapor Intrusion Site Listing

Just weeks after the Supreme Court narrowly backed the doctrine that mandates judicial deference to EPA and other agencies, the Justice Department (DOJ) is citing the decision in an effort to bolster its defense against a lawsuit by industry groups attempting to strike down one of EPA’s first Superfund listings based solely on vapor intrusion.

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Draft EPA Plan Seeks Sharp Limits On EAB, Sparking Litigation Warning

A draft plan circulating within EPA would sharply curtail the role of the Environmental Appeals Board (EAB) in a bid to speed permit reviews -- including possible elimination of the current administrative appeals process -- prompting warnings from critics that it could backfire by scaling back EAB’s role in building an administrative record that EPA can use to defend permits in court.

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Tennessee Urges Wheeler To Reject DOE Attempt To Skirt Cleanup Levels

Tennessee’s top environment official is urging EPA Administrator Andrew Wheeler to force the Energy Department (DOE) to meet Superfund cleanup standards at a department facility in the state, blasting DOE’s attempt to reframe the issues in dispute in order to skirt stricter cleanup standards in favor of weaker Atomic Energy Act (AEA) levels.

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House Approves PFAS Superfund Amendment Over GOP, Industry Objection

The House by voice vote July 12 approved an amendment to the defense authorization bill that would require EPA to declare within one year that perfluorinated chemicals are hazardous substances under the Superfund law, despite objections from GOP lawmakers and a number of industry groups, who fear significant new cleanup liability.

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Senate Confirms EPA Waste Chief Wright In Party-Line Vote

The Senate July 11 voted along party lines to confirm Peter Wright to lead EPA’s waste office, overcoming Democrats’ efforts to block, or at least delay, the vote as they cited new ethical questions, his long-time chemical industry background and EPA’s failure, to date, to fulfill promises to regulate two perfluorinated chemicals.

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House Poised To Debate PFAS Superfund Listing, Sparking GOP Criticism

The House is gearing up to debate an amendment to the defense authorization bill that would require EPA to list perfluorinated chemicals as hazardous substances under the Superfund law, a move that is already prompting strong opposition from a top Senate Republican opposed to the measure.

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Rules Committee Allows House Debate On Suite Of PFAS Amendments

The House Rules Committee is allowing lawmakers to debate a series of amendments governing perfluorinated chemicals when lawmakers take up the annual defense authorization bill in the coming days, including a key amendment requiring EPA to quickly designate the chemicals as hazardous substances under the Superfund law.

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Petitioning OECD, EPA Seeks To Blunt Impact Of Global Plastic Waste Limits

EPA is formally opposing plans by a group of the world’s wealthiest countries from adopting limits on trade in plastic recyclables that were recently approved by the global body governing the waste trade, an effort that could blunt the impact of any global limits at a time that domestic recyclers are struggling to find markets for the material.

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NIEHS director announces retirement

Linda Birnbaum is stepping down from her leadership of the National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences in October, where she has overseen research relevant to EPA.

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