Category: Special Topics in Environmental Management

Wastewater treatment

COVID-19: Enviro Managers and Water Departments Urge Public Not to Flush Wipes

Environmental protection has not proven to be a significant issue as the world grapples with the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic. One unexpected positive development is an improvement in air quality. At some point in the future, agencies, advocacy groups, and industrial organizations will likely make some use of data from satellite imagery showing less air pollution […]

EPA Supplements Its Science Transparency Proposal

As federal health agencies pour all available resources into halting the spread of the coronavirus disease (COVID-19), the EPA has stepped forward with a second proposal governing the Agency’s use of science at the Agency. The action supplements the EPA’s April 2018 proposal, Strengthening Transparency in Regulatory Science. That proposal would ensure that when developing […]

Pesticide spraying and application

EPA Revises Pesticide BE Method Under Endangered Species Act

Under the Endangered Species Act (ESA), the EPA is required to conduct biological evaluations (BEs) of pesticides to determine their effects on endangered and threatened species (listed species) and their critical habitats. The Agency has now issued a nonregulatory method for conducting BEs.

Menominee River

Tribe Effort to Invalidate Dredge-and-Fill Permit Fails

Attempts by the Menominee Indian Tribe of Wisconsin to invalidate a Clean Water Act (CWA) Section 404 (dredge and fill) permit the Michigan Department of Environmental Quality (MDEQ) granted Aquila Resources Inc. for a mining project on a portion of the Menominee River were unsuccessful in both a federal district court and the U.S. Court […]

Smokestacks, air pollution

When Industry Supports Environmental Regulation

It is a common (and somewhat unfounded) stereotype that industry abhors regulation, and words like “burdensome” and “unreasonable” frequently come into play in discussions of labor and environmental law. In the last several months, however, this impression has been challenged by big industry players that have come out in support of various environmental regulations—and, in […]

EPA sign

Motivation, Legality of Memo to EPA Science Advisory Board Questioned by House Leader

Concerns about instructions in a draft memorandum from EPA Administrator Andrew Wheeler about which proposed documents the Agency’s Science Advisory Board (SAB) reviews were raised in a letter Rep. Eddie Bernice Johnson (TX-D) sent to Wheeler. According to Johnson, the draft memo directed that the chair of the SAB, “in consultation with EPA,” would determine […]

Air emissions, pollution

State AGs Join EtO NESHAP Conversation

In a comment letter, Illinois Attorney General (AG) Kwame Raoul and 10 other state AGs have urged the U.S. EPA to propose regulatory revisions that will adequately protect the public and the environment from the risks posed by emissions of ethylene oxide (EtO) from commercial sterilization and fumigation operations. High on the list of requested […]

Energy infrastructure

EIA Forecasts U.S. and Global Energy Cases, CO2 Emissions

According to projections by the U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA), emissions of carbon dioxide (CO2) in the United States from burning fossil fuels to generate energy will decrease during the early to mid-2020s but will then begin to increase all the way to 2050. The reason, says the EIA, is that “economic growth and increasing […]