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EPA Facing Calls To Extend Consent Decree, Rule Deadlines Due To Virus

EPA is facing a growing number of requests to a extend a series of rulemaking and consent decree deadlines due to the ongoing effect of the coronavirus pandemic that is halting activity across the country, highlighting the potential for delays to a host of deregulatory actions even as industry eyes waiving certain environmental requirements.

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Court backs timeline for CWA spill rulemaking

The final consent decree between environmentalists and EPA sets a deadline for the agency to take “final action” on a rule for responding to a “worst case discharge” of a hazardous substance.

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EPA Authorizes Voluntary Telework For Most Agency Staff Until April 4

EPA Administrator Andrew Wheeler is authorizing voluntary telework for all agency employees across the nation for the next four weeks, “consistent with operational needs of departments and agencies,” in response to the coronavirus pandemic, a move agency staff are greeting as welcome and overdue.

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Despite EPA, Industry Support, DOJ Eliminates ‘Problematic’ SEPs

Despite strong public support from EPA and industry groups, the Justice Department (DOJ) is eliminating all uses of popular supplemental environmental projects (SEPs) that have long been a popular way to offset civil penalties in enforcement settlements and allowed settling parties to win community good will.

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Senate Democrats Seek $20 Billion EPA Grant Program For PFAS Cleanups

Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-NY) and other Democrats are seeking to create a new $20 billion EPA grant program for states to clean up drinking water and groundwater contaminated by certain per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS), a new emphasis in their ongoing efforts to address the issue in the absence of EPA rules.

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Court allows intervenors to join Washington suit over EPA WQS decision

A federal court’s decision to allow the intervenors’ participation could boost Washington state’s arguments that Trump EPA actions would harm sensitive subpopulations.

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Rehearing sought in state CWA 404 reconsideration case

The losing party in a case that raised questions about the limited options to reassess state oversight of dredge-and-fill permitting argues issues raised for the first time at oral argument deserve a rehearing.

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DOD Says PFAS Cleanup Will Likely Top $3 Billion But Braces For More

The Defense Department (DOD) is estimating that its costs for cleaning up the two most studied per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS) will be approximately $3 billion, an estimate that is 50 percent higher than its previous rough estimate, but the department expects that number to grow as it further investigates contamination.

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Judge rejects mine firm’s due process claim over Gold King NPL listing

One of the mining firms involved in litigation over the 2015 Gold King spill claimed an EPA-issued Superfund cleanup order that reached beyond the immediate spill area violated its due process rights.

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McCollum Urges Funding Panel Allocation Boost For EPA Water Programs

Rep. Betty McCollum (D-MN), chair of the appropriations subcommittee overseeing EPA, is urging her Rules Committee colleagues to boost the fiscal year 2021 allocation for her panel so that she can hike funding levels for key agency water programs including its state revolving funds (SRFs), regional water protection, and others.

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