How Many Misstatements Can You Find?
This morning, the Environmental Protection Agency and Department of Transportation formally announced — as expected — that the Trump Administration is revoking California’s waiver to set its own vehicle standards. Yesterday, Trump tweeted the news, coupling it with falsehoods claiming that the rollback would save lives and save consumers money. As I blogged yesterday, both …CONTINUE READING
Revoking California’s Clean Air Act Waiver Is Bad Policy and Legally Indefensible
This post was originally published on the American Constitution Society’s Expert Forum on September 18, 2019. President Trump announced the revocation on Twitter this morning. It’s not news that the Trump administration has been planning, via its so-called SAFE Rule, to freeze Obama-era fuel economy standards, roll back tailpipe greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions standards, and …CONTINUE READING
Threatening letter, investigation in addition to waiver revocation
Today in the Trump spite wars against California and the four auto manufacturers, we learn that the threat to revoke California’s waiver was only the first salvo from the administration. As I blogged last night, the Administration is considering revoking California’s federal waiver to issue pollution standards for cars without simultaneously rolling back tough auto …CONTINUE READING
Move Motivated by Spite, Not by Policy Considerations
A White House official today confirmed to Politico that the Administration is considering revoking California’s permission (called a “waiver”) to set its own greenhouse gas emissions and zero emission standards for cars and light trucks. Rumors are that the waiver revocation could happen as early as tomorrow. The news in this announcement is that the …CONTINUE READING
Reducing Methane is a Really Smart Climate Solution With Fast Results
Dan and Ken have offered quick takes on why the latest Trump assault on the environment is inexplicable — as they note, the oil industry doesn’t need or want a rollback of rules that regulate methane emissions, and the compliance costs to industry are tiny. So what is the point of gutting a rule to …CONTINUE READING
Even for deregulators, the latest rollback makes no sense.
The Washington Post reported this morning that EPA is getting ready to roll back yet another Obama Administration climate regulation — this time, one regulating natural gas leaks. I wanted to add a brief postscript to Ken Alex’s post on this. What struck me most immediately was the sheer economic weirdness of making this rollback …CONTINUE READING
Understanding Trump’s Drive to Ramp Up Carbon Emissions
Libertarians may oppose government regulation on principle, and to some extent that stance explains the Trump Administration’s environmental and energy policies. But the Trump Administration clearly views the fossil fuel sector as something more than another overly-regulated industry. Instead, expansion of this particular industry is seen as something good in itself. Thus, the Administration not …CONTINUE READING
Rather Than “Improve” ESA, Newly-Adopted Regulations Dramatically Erode Its Historic Protections
The Endangered Species Act, enacted in 1973, has for most of its history been the most controversial and politically-charged of all the foundational environmental laws adopted by Congress in the 1970’s. But despite its contentious history, opponents of the ESA have been unsuccessful in their efforts to weaken the law, either through significant Congressional amendments …CONTINUE READING
Three ultra-close elections put us a dozen years behind in climate policy.
I don’t know about you, but I’m finding it hard to keep focused on November 3, 2020, given the confusing welter of candidates on one side and the daily bombshells issuing from the other. So maybe this is a good time for a reminder of a why elections matter. In fact, they not only matter, …CONTINUE READING
Air quality standards are next on the chopping block.
The first phase of Trump’s regulatory rollbacks has been directed against Obama’s climate change regulations. Those deregulatory actions will be finalized soon. What happens next will be in the hands of the courts. But the Trump EPA is now beginning a new phase in its attack on environmental regulation. Having tried to eliminate climate rregulation, …CONTINUE READING