Saturday, September 23, 2017

EPA Chief Scott Pruitt Met with Many Corporate Execs -- then Made Decisions in their Favor

(an excerpt from The Washington Post) 

Environmental Protection Agency chief Scott Pruitt has met regularly with corporate executives from the automobile, mining and fossil fuel industries — in several instances shortly before making decisions favorable to those interest groups, according to a copy of his schedule obtained by The Washington Post. 

There were, by comparison, only two environmental groups and one public health group on the schedule, which covers the months of April through early September. 

It is the first time Pruitt’s schedule has been made public and it adds to understanding about how he makes decisions...

...he met at EPA headquarters with Fitzgerald Truck Sales, the nation’s largest manufacturer of commercial truck “gliders,” which are truck bodies without an engine or transmission.

On Aug. 17, a little more than two months after meeting with Fitzgerald, Pruitt announced that he would revisit an October 2016 decision to apply greenhouse gas emissions standards for heavy-duty trucks to gliders and trailers, saying he was making the decision following “the significant issues” raised by those in the industry.

Frank O’Donnell, president of Clean Air Watch, said that the manufacturers of gliders have been using their products’ lack of engines to evade stricter air pollution standards, which is why EPA issued its 2016 rule in the first place. “It is a classic special-interest loophole- one that would mean dirtier air and public health damage,” he said.

Friday, September 22, 2017

Guest Post: Hurricane Harvey Shows the Desperate Need for More Renewable Energy

[Clean Air Watch is pleased to present this timely guest post by Emily Folk]

Houston, the fourth largest city in the United States, is home to numerous oil refineries, chemical plants and legacy superfund sites. The waste chemicals from these facilities leeched into the nearly nine trillion gallons of water Hurricane Harvey dumped on the area last month. Residents are now faced with additional water pollution in the wake of this tragic category 4 storm. The impact of this and future crises can be reduced if the United States converts to more renewable energy sources. 

Thursday, September 07, 2017

Pollution Control Companies to EPA: Don't Approve Dirty Diesel Truck Loophole

The companies that make and sell pollution control equipment are urging the U.S. EPA NOT to re-open a glaring loophole that would permit trucks to pollute 20-40 times more than new trucks.  In response to a Tennessee company and member of Congress, the EPA recently said it might re-open this loophole -- closed under the Obama EPA -- which would give a break to so-called 'glider kits,' which essentially are truck bodies that can use dirty old engines.  We applaud the efforts by the emission control companies to call attention and object to what would be a step back towards dirtier air.