The presence of a new acting administrator at EPA in the wake of Scott Pruitt’s resignation may mean a change in tone and a renewed openness for journalists covering the agency. But it doesn’t appear to mean different policy approaches. This week’s TipSheet reports on the early days of former coal lobbyist Andrew Wheeler’s command, with a roundup of coverage and angles to watch.
Anything related to air quality, air pollution, or the atmosphere
When EPA falls short on regulation of pesticides, might states step into the breach? That’s exactly what happened in June when Hawaii banned toxic organophosphate chlorpyrifos. To take a closer look, this week’s TipSheet reports on how federal regulation opens the door for state, or even local, preemption and offers angles and resources for environmental reporters.
It’s summer smog season, with all its unpleasant environmental and health impacts. But if you’re reporting on this perpetual problem, you may not be able to rely on the EPA to help you figure out where it is worst. This week’s TipSheet explains, then helps get you started on your own smog coverage.
Big environmental issues such as the use of pesticides, labelling of organic foods and the preservation of farmland and water are central to a huge farm bill lurching its way through the nation’s legislature, hamstrung by partisan politics. Our latest Backgrounder sets up the landscape for your coverage.
When it comes to the wildfires that now regularly threaten life and property, it’s not just the flames that create risk. Wildfire smoke itself can cause harm, even a long way from the fire. This week’s TipSheet explains the health threats of wildfire smoke and how to monitor the risk for your own area.
The EPA turns to friendly media to share its news, while limiting access to mainstream reporters. And the agency moves to “weaponize” transparency. Those stories, plus, a new way to map political influence on environmental policy, and key reports made public, in the latest WatchDog TipSheet.
"A number of environmental groups filed a lawsuit against the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) on Monday challenging a recent administrative decision to allow certain major power plants to turn off some pollution controls."
"An enforcement breakthrough a decade in the making was unveiled in December: Three manufacturers of a sooty oil-based product known as carbon black had agreed to slash air pollution by thousands of tons each year. But there was a twist."
"Seven Democratic states on Friday threatened to sue the Trump administration for its delay in enforcing an Obama administration rule on air pollution from landfills."
"The EPA has taken at least 15 major actions on air pollution—all to delay, weaken or repeal protections, and all opposed by leading public health groups."