EPA Administrator Scott Pruitt, "a former Oklahoma attorney general who built a career out of suing the agency he now leads, has moved to stock the top offices of the agency with like-minded conservatives — many of them skeptics of climate change and all of them intent on rolling back environmental regulations that they see as overly intrusive and harmful to business."
Wondering what WOTUS is? Or how the Clean Water Rule relates to the Clean Water Act and to the Section 404 permitting program meant to prevent the destruction of U.S. wetlands? Our Beat Basics column explains the history and background of the rule to help you cover White House, EPA and court action likely ahead.
As questions arise about how thoroughly the U.S. EPA's new administrator Scott Pruitt (left) will enforce environmental regulations, reporters can get at the story through EPA’s own exhaustive enforcement database. TipSheet provides a step-by-step on how to use data resources to follow trends and find bad actors.
Bobby Magill, in his most recent SEJ President's Report, recalls his time traversing federal wilderness areas that are now increasingly the subject of dispute. How are they to be used? Who is to hold them? Will these vast Western lands remain in the public domain? And what is the role of journalists in covering this story?
"Hundreds of scientists put aside their habitual wariness toward political activity and rallied over the weekend in Boston’s Copley Square, with many saying the Trump administration has left them no choice."
"The Department of Energy has taken down its public-facing employee directory, making it far more difficult for journalists and members of the public to locate email addresses and phone numbers for agency personnel."
"Employees of the Environmental Protection Agency have been calling their senators to urge them to vote on Friday against the confirmation of Scott Pruitt, President Trump’s contentious nominee to run the agency, a remarkable display of activism and defiance that presages turbulent times ahead for the E.P.A."
"Retired and former employees of the Environmental Protection Agency are banding together in rare activism to defend colleagues still working for the agency, as fears of deep layoffs, regulatory rollbacks and science suppression spread through the federal ranks."
Environmental journalists at a day-long event urged colleagues to report on the real, local impacts of policy, more than on the buzz around the policy. On hand at the SEJ-sponsored program were representatives of administrations past and present, including Trump EPA transition team head Myron Ebell (shown).
Tracy Mehan lll, American Water Works Association
Myron Ebell, Competitive Enterprise Institute
Ed Maibach, George Mason University
Scott Segal, Policy Resolution Group and Bracewell LLP
Bob Perciasepe, Center for Climate & Energy Solutions
The latest WatchDog TipSheet details an open-records case against U.S. EPA nominee Scott Pruitt (shown), the scoop on an Agriculture Department animal welfare database that vanished then returned, a reporter busted at Standing Rock, plus items on whistleblowers, coal-ash and more.