Bush Administration

Misfiring on fire policy

A centerpiece of the Bush administration’s national forest management policy was the claim that vegetation management projects would be targeted to places where wildfire poses high risks to human communities — the “wildland-urban interface.” According to a new study in Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences (subscription required) led by Tania Schoennagel at the …

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Auto Emissions Deal–Enough Credit to Go Around?

The announcement of the deal on auto emissions was roundly hailed as a remarkable achievement of the Obama Administration.  There is no arguing with the notion that it was dramatic, both in terms of the bargaining process and the outcome.  The Los Angeles Times today provided a behind-the-scenes view of the months-long negotiations, including everything …

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New life for new source review

The Obama Administration is beyond its 100th day, but still busy on the environmental front undoing the work of its predecessor. One thing that means at EPA is breathing life back into the Clean Air Act’s New Source Review program, which the Bush Administration had been busily trying to write out of existence. In the …

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The fat lady is warming up — make that singing

UPDATE 4/28: The Secretaries of Interior and Commerce have announced that they are revoking the Bush administration’s midnight rule on ESA section 7 consultation. They apparently are not revoking the special rule on the polar bear (as they were also authorized to do under the omnibus spending bill). We will have more when the formal …

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Cleaning Up the Bush EPA’s Dry Cleaning Rule

The Washington Post reported that EPA “is reconsidering whether to compel dry cleaners to phase out a cancer-causing chemical used in tens of thousands of operations nationwide.”  In 2006, the Bush Administration issued an air toxics rule for professional dry cleaners using perchloroethylene in which it tightened technology requirements, but refused to phase out use …

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Environmental Measures in Spending Bill Clear Congress

At the same time, the measure chips away at several leftover Bush administration policies. It clears the way for the Obama administration to reverse a rule issued late in the Bush administration that says greenhouse gases may not be restricted to protect polar bears from global warming. Another Bush administration rule that reduced the input …

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It’s Morning in America (for science)

The  Washington Post reports: When President Obama lifts restrictions on funding for human embryonic stem cell research Monday, he will also issue a presidential memorandum aimed at insulating scientific decisions across the federal government from political influence, officials said today.

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Another Posthumous Loss for the Bush EPA

Greenwire Reports: The U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia ruled that U.S. EPA’s 2006 standards for fine particulate matter were, “in several respects, contrary to law and unsupported by adequately reasoned decisionmaking.” At issue was the rule that kept the primary standard for annual fine particulate matter at 15 micrograms per …

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Supreme Court Denies Cert. in Mercury Case

The Supreme Court has declined to review a lower court opinion striking down the Bush Administration’s regulation of mercury.  This isn’t a huge surprise since the Obama Admimistration indicated that the lower court opinion was consistent with its own regulatory policy, leaving only the industry to seek revieew.  The lower court opinion is one of …

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The Bush Legacy

The New York Times has a story this morning that tries to summarize Bush’s environmental legacy.  As the story points out, there are positive notes, like the diesel regulations and the last-minute designation of marine sanctuaries.  Yet, the overall message is negative.  The Bush Administration will largely be remembered as a time of environmental setbacks …

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