Category: Special Topics in Environmental Management

WOTUS river

Agencies’ Proposal Seeks to Replace WOTUS Definition

With the release of their proposed redefinition of the Clean Water Act (CWA) term waters of the United States (WOTUS), the EPA and the Army Corps of Engineers are, technically at least, midway in their journey toward replacing the Obama administration’s 2015 WOTUS definition. The prepublication version of the proposal is available here.

air emissions, pollution

EPA Issues Implementation Requirements for 2015 Ozone NAAQS

After grumbling that it intended to resist implementing the revised National Ambient Air Quality Standards (NAAQS) for ozone it issued in 2015, in August 2018, the EPA informed a federal court that it had decided to uphold and defend the NAAQS as they had been promulgated. That decision set in motion the Agency’s responsibility to […]

Refinery

RFS Complicated by Small Refinery Waivers

The EPA’s use of its Clean Air Act (CAA) authority to grant waivers from Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS) obligations to small refineries has for years been a top issue of contention associated with the RFS. The Agency’s use of the waiver has continued to spark negative reactions from renewable fuel advocates following the Agency’s issuance […]

EPA Proposes Sell-Through Extension for Wood Heaters

Responding to concerns expressed by retailers of certain residential woodburning heaters, the EPA is proposing to provide these entities time to sell these devices beyond what was allowed in the Agency’s 2015 amendments to its New Source Performance Standards (NSPS) covering a range of heaters.

Scientific research

The Differing Views on Environmental Science and Regulation

The EPA’s Strengthening Transparency in Regulatory Science proposal occupies a mere 7 pages in the Federal Register (April 30, 2018), and yet, among scientists, human health and environmental groups, and certain industry organizations, the proposal has been the subject of intense discussion. Congress has also been weighing in on the merits of the proposal.

EPA Offices, Washington DC

What’s EPA Enforcement Like at Other Federal Facilities and Agencies?

The EPA’s enforcement of violations of environmental laws and regulations at federal facilities is a complicated business that has been addressed by the U.S. Supreme Court (Ohio v. United States Department of Energy, 1992, which affirmed federal facility sovereign immunity with respect to the Resource Conservation and Recovery Act (RCRA)), presidential Executive Orders, and by […]