Environmental Elections & Politics

Read need-to-know updates, commentary, and analysis on Environmental issues written by leading professionals.
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Trump’s Proposed EPA Budget Cuts Underscore the Role of Next Generation Enforcement

Proposal for dramatic reductions in EPA staff and budget could lead to uneven environmental enforcement as states, tribes and environmental groups fill the vacuum. Introduction - On March 16, Donald Trump’s...more

Trump Administration's Budget Blueprint Calls For Significant Impacts to Environmental Programs

The Trump Administration unveiled significant rollbacks in funding for federal agencies when it released its Budget Blueprint to Make America Great Again on March 16, 2017. The President's proposed budget priorities would...more

Washington Continues to Consider a Carbon Tax and Defends Clean Air Rule

This is the first installment in the West Coast Carbon Policy Update — Three Part Series, which will examine carbon policies along the West Coast in Washington, Oregon, and California. While federal efforts to reduce...more

President Trump Orders EPA Review of Corporate Average Fuel Economy Standards

One of the more aggressive steps taken by the Obama administration to reduce carbon emissions was to have the EPA set an ambitious target for Corporate Average Fuel Economy (CAFE) standards: 54.5 miles per gallon by 2025. In...more

[Webinar] The Trump Experience: How U.S. Law Will Change - April 11th, 12:30pm ET

Change is a given with every new presidential election. Under the Trump Administration, many questions have been raised that impact local and global organizations. Join LeClairRyan for an in-depth discussion on key regulatory...more

Has EPA Region I Lost Its Treasured Independence?

Earlier this month, Trump transition team member David Schnare sent a memorandum to EPA Assistant Administrators and Regional Administrators. The one-paragraph memo directs AAs and RAs...more

The Congressional Review Act: Congress Dusts Off an Old Oversight Weapon

One of the great powers that Congress has to undo changes made by a prior administration is the Congressional Review Act (CRA), which was enacted in 1996. As of March 17, 2017, this Congress has used the CRA to overturn more...more

Executive Order That Seeks to Undo Obama Administration's "Waters of the United States" Rule Has More Limited Immediate Impacts

Debate and uncertainty regarding the extent of federal jurisdiction under the Clean Water Act will continue under the Executive Order. On February 28, 2017, President Trump issued an Executive Order entitled “Restoring...more

Presidential Executive Order Begins Rollback of the “Waters of the United States Rule”

The rollback of the controversial Waters of the United States (WOTUS) Rule is underway. Last week, President Trump issued an Executive Order directing the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and the Department of the Army...more

California Environmental Law & Policy Update - March 2017 #3

Environmental and Policy Focus - Trump’s budget proposal slashes EPA funding - Washington Post - Mar 16 - President Trump on Thursday released his budget plan for the next fiscal year, which proposes cutting the...more

Maine net energy billing rules, 2017 revision

On January 31, 2017, the Maine Public Utilities Commission adopted revisions to its rule chapter 313, governing net energy billing. Net metering, or net energy billing, is the metering and billing mechanism that Maine and...more

EPA and Other Agencies to Seek Comment on Ways to Improve “Efficiency, Effectiveness and Accountability"

President Trump has given executive branch agencies 180 days to conduct an internal review and to propose, with input from public stakeholders, reorganization plans to “improve the efficiency, effectiveness, and...more

If a Climate Change Report Falls in the White House, Does Anyone Hear It?

This week, the National Academy of Sciences Committee tasked with reviewing the Climate Science Special Report, issued by the Obama administration, basically blessed it. They had some comments, but I’ve been through the NAS...more

President Trump Orders Revisit of "Waters of the United States" Rule

President Donald Trump issued, on February 28, 2017, an Executive Order ("EO") aimed at rescinding and revising the Obama Administration-issued final rule entitled "Clean Water Rule: Definition of 'Waters of the United...more

Environmental deregulation under President Trump: Business as usual?

The Trump Administration is expected to issue a high-profile executive order that seeks to eliminate a major Obama-era environmental measure, the Clean Power Plan....more

Wrap-Up of Federal and State Chemical Regulatory Developments, March 2017

TSCA/FIFRA/NTP - Lynn L. Bergeson, Charles M. Auer, and Carla Hutton, “Practitioner Insights: A Review and Analysis of TSCA Reform Provisions Pertinent to Manufacturers and Processors of Nanoscale Materials,” Bloomberg...more

Changing Tide for Obama-era Water Rule

On February 28, 2017, President Trump signed an Executive Order (EO) directing the withdrawal of the controversial Waters of the United States (WOTUS) Rule. The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and the U.S. Army Corps of...more

Going All the Way: California Bill Calls for 100% Renewable

Legislation would require that 100% of California’s electricity be generated from renewable sources by 2045—with an interim goal of 50% generation by the end of 2025....more

California Environmental Law & Policy Update - March 2017 #2

Environmental and Policy Focus - Southern California regulators approve smog plan with tougher refinery rules, voluntary measures for goods movement facilities - Los Angeles Times - Mar 3 - The South...more

Maryland 2017 Environmental Legislative Agenda Set

March 6 marked the final day for the introduction of bills in the Maryland General Assembly without a rules suspension. Below are highlights of environmental or related public health bills under consideration in the Maryland...more

Reducing Ozone Regulation Costs Under the New Administration

New administration offers opportunity for engagement on attainment status and to reduce potential compliance costs of 2015 ozone standards. Over the past four decades, compliance with the ozone National Ambient Air...more

White House’s Budget Blueprint Includes Significant Cuts to the EPA

Last week, the White House unveiled its $1.65 trillion blueprint for the FY2018 federal budget, which prioritizes discretionary defense spending, with an increase of $54 billion to $603 billion, by reducing total non-defense...more

US Environmental Regulations to Face Rollbacks, but Reform likely to be Tempered by Legal Barriers

Since assuming office in January, President Donald Trump – with the support of Congress – has stated his intention to roll back “burdensome” U.S. environmental regulations. The White House and Congress aim to reverse several...more

EPA Withdraws Oil and Gas Information Collection Request

On March 2, 2017, new EPA Administrator Scott Pruitt made it clear that he will follow through on President Trump's promise to reduce regulatory burdens by withdrawing the Information Collection Request (ICR) that the Obama...more

EPA to the Oil and Gas Industry on its Request for Information: Never Mind

Only months after the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) first contacted thousands of oil and gas companies demanding detailed information regarding methane releases from gas production facilities and related equipment, it...more

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