Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke published an op-ed today calling for “active management” of our federal public lands to reduce wildfire risk, and blaming “radical environmentalists who would rather see forests and communities burn than see a logger in the woods” for the prevalance and lethality of wildfires in the American West. Zinke’s op-ed is disingenuous, […]
Federal Climate Policy
New Article Addresses Hot Spot Pollution and the Clean Air Act
Over the last fifty years, we have made huge progress in cleaning up the nation’s air. Overall pollution levels have dropped by 70 percent since the 1970s, cars are 99 percent cleaner, and we’ve essentially eliminated lead from the atmosphere. The Clean Air Act is the main reason for this success, saving countless lives and […]
Meredith Hankins and Nicholas Bryner co-author legal explainer for The Conversation
California and the Trump administration are going different directions on mileage standards. AP Photo/Rich Pedroncelli Meredith Hankins, University of California, Los Angeles and Nicholas Bryner, Louisiana State University The Trump administration on Aug. 2 formally announced a proposal to freeze fuel economy standards and tailpipe emission standards for new cars. In addition, it is proposing […]
The Legal Grounds For Doing So Are Dubious At Best
As expected, the Trump Administration has released its proposal that recommends freezing combined fuel efficiency and greenhouse gas standards at 2020 levels for model years 2021-2025. The proposal also recommends revoking the waiver EPA granted California in 2013 to issue its own greenhouse gas emissions standards and to continue the state’s program to gradually increase […]
Even within the Trump Administration and the House GOP, climate change is seen as a threat.
In written testimony to Congress about threat to national security, the Trump Administration’s Director of National Intelligence (DNI) discussed climate change. His discussion didn’t equivocate about the reality or dangers of climate change. Rather, he took the science, and the threat, seriously: “The past 115 years have been the warmest period in the history of […]
Juliana v. U.S. “Atmospheric Trust” Federal Trial Set to Begin in October
The Trump Administration really, really doesn’t want the Juliana v. United States case, a.k.a. the “atmospheric trust litigation,” to go to trial. But despite the persistent efforts of President Trump’s Justice Department to have the Juliana case dismissed, it now appears that the most important currently-pending climate change case in the nation will indeed go to trial […]
EPA appears poised to abdicate their responsibility to protect public health
As my colleague Ann Carlson explained, the EPA is expected to announce a catastrophic rollback this week to freeze national vehicle emission and fuel economy standards and challenge California’s authority to set their own, more stringent standards. The Trump EPA’s decision to weaken the vehicle standards despite thorough midterm reviews by both the Obama-era EPA and California that […]
Trump’s policies clash with each other remarkably often.
A certain amount of policy inconsistency is inevitable in any Administration. But the Trump Administration seems to be breaking all records. The Administration does have strong impulses. The trouble is that its goals keep colliding. Here are some examples. Favoring gas at the expense of coal. . . And vice versa. Trump wants to promote […]
Lawsuits will follow
According to a Bloomberg report this morning, the Trump Administration, under new EPA Administrator Andrew Wheeler, will release a proposal later this week to freeze greenhouse gas emission and fuel economy standards at 2020 levels. The effect is that automakers will face standards of about 35 miles per gallon rather than seeing the standards increase […]
Where are we, after continual environmental assaults by Trump, Pruitt, and Zinke?
Trump has been in office for a year and a half. Where do thing stand? How permanent will the damage be to environmental protection? Answer: bad, but not nearly as it might have been. The degree of resistance especially impressive when you consider the circumstances just how much of American government is controlled by Republicans. […]