Pollution & Health
UCLA Environmental Law Clinic and Surfrider Foundation to Brief Congress on Marine Plastic Pollution Crisis
The problem is big, but federal action could help.
Next week, I’ll be in Washington, D.C. with the Surfrider Foundation and two of our fabulous Frank G. Wells Environmental Law Clinic students, Charoula Melliou and Divya Rao, to brief Congress on harms caused by marine plastic pollution and steps the federal government can take to combat the problem. Plastic pollution is a serious issue, …CONTINUE READING
The potential of a proposed Global Pact for the Environment remains uncertain
The 1990s were the heyday of international environmental lawmaking. The 1992 United Nations “Rio Conference” on Environment and Development catalyzed the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC), Convention on Biological Diversity, and the UN Convention to Combat Desertification. The decade also witnessed the launch of the Rotterdam Convention on Prior Informed Consent as well as protocols …CONTINUE READING
Governor Brown Easily Ranks as the Top Environmental Governor in State History
Don’t it always seem to go That you don’t know what you’ve got `Til it’s gone –Joni Mitchell (“Big Yellow Taxi”) On this, the last day of Jerry Brown‘s tenure as California’s governor, it’s appropriate to reflect on Governor Brown’s environmental legacy. And a most formidable legacy it’s been. Brown has, quite …CONTINUE READING
House Democrats have power to use appropriations process to stop Trump Administration environmental rollbacks
Dan has already posted about some of the big deregulatory steps the Trump Administration is likely to take in the next year. But the new Democratic majority in the House could have something to say about those steps, if they wanted to. Democrats will have even more leverage over spending bills than they had in …CONTINUE READING
What, exactly, is EPA up to by changing the underlying analysis of the Mercury and Air Toxics Standard (known as the MATS rule), as it announced yesterday? Is it the first step in gutting the use of cost-benefit analysis to support strong environmental regulations? Is it a gift to Murray Energy in its lawsuit seeking …CONTINUE READING
The Trump Administration cares about regulatory costs. Regulatory benefits? Not so much.
Since Ronald Reagan’s time, there has been a consensus among conservatives that cost-benefit analysis (CBA) should be the gold standard for regulation. That approach has given them common ground with moderates such as Cass Sunstein, many economists (whether liberal or conservative), and at least a few scholars more environmentally inclined. Cost-benefit analysis has had its …CONTINUE READING
Guest Bloggers Deborah Gordon and Frances Reuland: Is California Extraordinary? Its Oil Resources Certainly Are
Facts About California’s Oil and Greenhouse Gas Emissions
Despite ongoing federal rollbacks to environmental regulations, California has the right to set its own clean air standards because it is truly extraordinary. Truth be told, the compelling circumstances that first set in motion California’s vehicle emissions standards remain entirely valid. And there are four recent conditions, related to California’s oil supply, production, and refining, …CONTINUE READING
Trump Administration’s Quiet Policy Change Could More Than Double Hazardous Air Pollution in California
Change in MACT applicability could result in 935 additional tons of toxic pollution emitted by stationary sources in the state each year
Earlier this year, EPA made a major policy change in how the agency evaluates stationary sources of hazardous air pollutants in a memorandum quietly issued without any warning or opportunity for public comment. This policy change was promptly challenged by California and two different coalitions of environmental and community groups (one suit was filed by …CONTINUE READING
UCLA’s Environmental Law Clinic Files Brief on Behalf of Amici League of California Cities and California State Association of Counties
Brief defends local government authority to regulate oil drilling in face of industry challenge
[Update: The Second District Court of Appeal, Division 5 has rejected all the amicus curiae brief applications filed in this case, including this brief. We will leave this post, and the link to the brief, up on this blog so that anyone interested may see our arguments, but the brief will not be considered in …CONTINUE READING
Trump’s pro-coal EPA plan equates two legal provisions with little in common.
Trump’s plan for coal-fired power plants, like Obama’s plan to cut carbon emissions, is based on section 111(d) of the Clean Air Act. But much of the legal argument relies on an analogy to section 165 to support EPA’s very restrictive interpretation of section 111(d). It’s that restrictive interpretation that leads the agency to reject …CONTINUE READING