EPA Proposes Standards for Vehicle Emissions and FuelsApril 26, 2013
EPA has proposed to significantly reduce emissions of conventional air pollutants from cars and trucks while at the same time reducing the amount of sulfur in the nation’s gasoline supply. The new rules, which are known as “Tier 3” emissions and fuel standards, attempt to harmonize federal emissions requirements with California state requirements, creating one national market for automobiles.
EPA Accepting Comments on Stormwater ProposalApril 26, 2013
The EPA has formally proposed revisions to its effluent guidelines for stormwater discharges from construction and development point sources. The proposed rule would make several revisions to the non-numeric requirements of the existing rule, as well as withdraw the numeric discharge standards.
EPA Revises Utility MATS Limits for New Power PlantsApril 26, 2013
On March 28, EPA finalized revisions to the Mercury and Air Toxics Standards, or MATS (also known as “Utility MACT”) for new power plants, which were originally promulgated in February 2012.
EPA Proposes Water Pollution Rules for New and Existing Power PlantsApril 24, 2013
The EPA has released its long-awaited proposed rule for regulating pollution discharges into waters of the United States from 1,200 power plants nationwide, as well as from any new plants.
Settlement Shutters More Wisconsin Coal PlantsApril 22, 2013
The EPA, Wisconsin Power and Light Company (WPL), and various co-defendants and co-plaintiffs, have entered into a settlement agreement which will significantly alter Wisconsin’s energy generation portfolio and cost over a billion dollars. This action is part of a larger EPA plan to “eliminate or minimize emissions from coal-fired power plants, cement plants, glass plants and acid plants, which have been shown to seriously affect human health and the environment, by ensuring that there are no under-controlled coal-fired electric generating units, cement, acid, or glass plants.”
Retrospective Review at the Federal Level Adding BurdensApril 18, 2013
Sofie E. Miller, a policy analyst at George Washington University's Regulatory Studies Center, exposes the failure of the federal retrospective review of rules to generate benefits for the regulated community. Miller's analysis, summarized in Reducing Burdens? Tier 3 Tells Another Story, found that agencies may be adding new regulatory hurdles under the cover of the review program.
Environmental Decisions in the Face of UncertaintyMarch 27, 2013
New Factsheet Available for Local Water PlantsMarch 27, 2013
Depending on the type of equipment they use and the air pollutants emitted from that equipment, some local wastewater treatment plants and water supply systems in Wisconsin may be required to get an air pollution control permit from Wisconsin DNR.
A new factsheet, WWTP and Water Supply Systems – Do I Need an Air Pollution Permit?, has been developed to help operators of wastewater treatment plants and water supply systems determine whether they need to get an air pollution permit, as well as the requirements for emergency engines or generators used at these facilities.
Obama Administration Announces Nominees to Head EPA & DOEMarch 27, 2013
Federal cabinet secretaries rarely serve for the entire time the President who appointed them is in office, such is the case with the U.S. EPA and the Dept. of Energy.
EPA Survey Finds More Than Half of the Nation’s River and Stream Miles in Poor ConditionMarch 27, 2013
Using data from the 2008-2009 National Rivers and Stream Assessment, the EPA has determined that 55% of the nation’s streams and rivers are in poor condition for aquatic life.
Independent Panel to Peer Review EPA’s Fracking ResearchMarch 27, 2013
The EPA’s independent Science Advisory Board (SAB) has announced the formation of a Hydraulic Fracturing Research Advisory panel. This panel of independent experts will peer review EPA’s 2014 draft report of results for its national study on any potential health and environmental impacts of fracking on drinking water resources.
S.S. Badger Coal Ash Discharge to Lake Michigan to Cease by End of 2014 Sailing SeasonMarch 27, 2013
The EPA and DOJ have announced the lodging of a proposed consent decree that requires Lake Michigan Carferry Service, Inc. (LMC) of Ludington, Michigan, to eliminate the discharge of coal ash into Lake Michigan by the S.S. Badger by the end of the 2014 sailing season.
Supreme Court Clarifies Logging Roads Runoff RulesMarch 27, 2013
In Decker v. Northwest Environmental Defense Center, the Supreme Court ruled that runoff from logging roads does not constitute a discharge from a point source that requires an NPDES permit. The decision upholds EPA’s interpretation of its own regulations and overturns a 9th Circuit decision which had held that permits were necessary for logging runoff.
GAO Report Connects Water and Air PollutionMarch 6, 2013
Agencies Seeking Comments on Guidelines for Wetland MitigationMarch 4, 2013
In March 2012, Gov. Walker signed into law 2011 WI Act 118, which requires property owners to mitigate for wetland impacts if they receive permission to fill wetlands under an individual permit. Guidelines covering what counts as mitigation under the law have been drafted and are now available for public comment through March 15.
Agri-View News Interview with Moroney Highlights New Attitude at DNRMarch 1, 2013
The DNR has undergone many changes under the leadership of Sec. Cathy Stepp, whose deputy, Matt Moroney, discussed the impact those changes have had on the agency and its relationship with the public at a recent agricultural seminar. A summary of his in-depth remarks was included in the latest edition of the popular Agri-View News.
EPA Cracking Down on DairiesFebruary 27, 2013
EIA Explores Cellulosic Biofuels ShortfallFebruary 26, 2013
EPA Releases Enforcement MapsFebruary 14, 2013
The EPA has released a new tool that allows the public to see graphical illustrations and maps of enforcement and compliance data for waste, air, and water programs across the country.
EPA Accepting Comments on New Climate Change PlanFebruary 13, 2013
The EPA has released its Climate Change Adaptation Plan, and is now accepting comments on its draft plan, which calls for the agency to amend its operations, which could include promulgating new rules, to account for increasingly rapid global warming. The effort comes in response to a 2009 government-wide directive via President Obama's Council on Environmental Quality, requiring agencies to plan this year for future climate change.