Posts Tagged ‘Environmental Protection Agency’

Environment roundup

  • EPA reversal on Waters of the United States rule gives power back to states [Andrew Wheeler, Kansas City Star; related Federalist Society video with Donald Kochan and Robert Glicksman; earlier]
  • Even if one concedes that throwaway items generate environmental externalities, it still doesn’t mean laws should ban disposable diapers or other single-use plastics [Ryan Bourne, Telegraph/Cato] “New Jersey Plans a Plastic-Banning Spree” [Christian Britschgi]
  • NYC’s Mayor de Blasio: “we will seize their buildings and we will put them in the hands of a community nonprofit.” [John Sexton]
  • It’s sometimes claimed that NYC’s unusually high cost of constructing public infrastructure arises from its preexisting infrastructure, geology, and high land values, yet other world cities with tougher challenges in each category build at much lower cost [Connor Harris, City Journal]
  • Podcast: Lynne Kiesling lecture on environmental economics [Cato University 2018]
  • Acrylamide follies: “Bid to introduce cancer warnings on breakfast cereal packaging fails in California court” [Legal NewsLine, from July] After public outcry, state of California acted last summer to forestall possible Prop 65 warnings on coffee [New York Times, earlier]

Environment roundup

Environment roundup

The government ordered us to say this, lead paint abatement edition

The Environmental Protection Agency regulates the renovation of homes and other buildings containing lead paint and other hazards, and it recently went after a high-profile pair of violators, namely Chip and Joanna Gaines of the popular HGTV show Fixer Upper, for not following its rules in renovations shown on the show. “In addition to the fines and cleanup costs, the [EPA] settlement instructed Chip Gaines to discuss lead safety in an episode of the show and promote it on social media.” [Umair Irfan, Vox]

Environmental journalism, brought to you by the EPA

I like advocacy journalism as well as the next fellow — at least I consume a lot of it as a reader. That doesn’t mean the federal government should be funding it, thereby giving a boost to one side of environmental debates in the mid-Atlantic region. My new piece for the DC Examiner examines the Environmental Protection Agency’s longstanding subsidies for the influential Chesapeake Bay Journal.

Environment roundup

EPA swears off collusive settlements

My new Cato post applauds administrator Scott Pruitt for breaking with past Environmental Protection Agency policy under which it has settled not-necessarily-adversarial lawsuits by agreeing to issue regulations (dubbed by critics “sue and settle“). Pruitt’s new steps toward transparency and public access are welcome but easily reversed by a successor, which is “why Congress should proceed to consider legislation to curb sweetheart pacts on a more lasting basis.”

Land use and environment roundup

They fought the EPA and the EPA won

From John Ross’s Short Circuit newsletter for the Institute for Justice, Mar. 10: “Allegation: EPA agents lead armed raid of Casper, Wyo. laboratory based on false accusation from former employee, an 18 year old, that the lab falsified water-quality records. Five years later, case dismissed against former lab owners without charges. They sue the EPA. District court: It’s too late to sue; the two-year statute of limitations started running when you lost the lab. Tenth Circuit: Actually, you couldn’t have even sued then because sovereign immunity.” [Garling v. EPA]

Environment roundup

  • Power to regulate interstate commerce includes power to keep property owner from evicting a prairie dog? Sounds rational to Tenth Circuit [Ilya Shapiro and David McDonald]
  • Dimock, Pa. episode was central to anti-fracking lore including movie “Gasland,” now judge has overturned $4 million verdict in case [Timothy Cama, The Hill]
  • “EPA Employees Organize Against Taxpayers” [NPR via David Boaz on Twitter]
  • Sweetheart consent decrees (“sue and settle”) enable agencies to bypass notice-and-comment rulemaking in adopting controversial rules, as with EPA natural gas plant rule [WLF]
  • Judge rebukes Delaware Riverkeeper in FERC pipeline case [Erin Mundahl, Inside Sources]
  • On the way out, President Obama designated vast tract of Atlantic ocean as “monument,” forbidding commercial fishing. Irrational as policy, as law, and as procedure [Jonathan Wood]