Purges of EPA science panels by Administrator Scott Pruitt are just one among many moves in an ongoing dispute over the integrity of the environmental sciences in government policymaking. The latest Issue Backgrounder takes a deep dive with a briefing on five likely battles ahead for the coming year.
Anything related to air quality, air pollution, or the atmosphere
Trying to figure out the air quality in your coverage area? The EPA may not be much help. But this week's TipSheet suggests some effective work-arounds for your reporting. Get the backstory on ozone standards, tips on how to track ozone "nonattainment" for your area and learn why smog matters so much to public health.
"As firefighters fought to control deadly wildfires north of San Francisco last month, a small unit of Alphabet Inc.’s Google had a more modest goal. It had employees driving cars around loaded with air-monitoring equipment to measure how badly the smoke was polluting the air."
A push for disclosure on hazardous air emissions from industrial hog farms, and reporting on how the coastal real estate industry works to block bad news about sea-level rise. That, plus the Bay Journal FOIAs the EPA over grant defunding, and a move in Congress towards a federal shield law, all in the latest WatchDog.
President Trump campaigned partly on the promise to abolish an Obama-era program to cut power plant CO2 emissions. But as TipSheet explains in the first in a series of special reports on key issues in the coming year, the program is tied up in complex court proceedings that may, in the end, be moot. Learn why.
"NEW DELHI — As thick smog crept over India’s capital this past week and smudged landmarks from view, Nikunj Pandey could feel his eyes and throat burning."
"The Environmental Protection Agency proposed a rule Thursday to repeal tighter emissions standards for heavy-duty trucks with older engines, an Obama-era regulation aimed at controlling soot and other pollutants along with greenhouse-gas emissions linked to climate change."
"The U.S. Senate voted on Thursday 49-47 to confirm a top air quality official at the Environmental Protection Agency, despite concerns raised by lawmakers over his industry ties."
"U.S. EPA Administrator Scott Pruitt is again signaling his determination to slow-walk key compliance decisions for the agency's 2015 ground-level ozone standard, raising the odds that only a prolonged court battle will settle the issue."
"California’s top water regulators adopted an agreement that commits the state to following through on plans of building wetlands and controlling dust around the shrinking Salton Sea over the next 10 years."