EPA Suspends Environmental Rules Enforcement In Response To Covid19

City Smog

Last week we talked about how lower economic activity can mean lower emissions (until they come roaring back on the up-turn). It’s – at the very least – a slim silver lining to economic disruption. But the white house has different plans.

EPA Suspends Environmental Rules Enforcement In Response To Covid19

Last week we talked about how lower economic activity can mean lower emissions (until they come roaring back on the up-turn). It’s – at the very least – a slim silver lining to economic disruption. But the white house has different plans.

The EPA announced that they are suspending enforcement of environmental rules because staffing shortages from COVID19 have made it hard for corporations to keep up with deadlines and accountability requirements. They announced in a memo that the “consequences may affect the ability of an operation to meet enforceable limitations on air emissions and water discharges, requirements for the management of hazardous waste, or requirements to ensure and provide safe drinking water.”

“This EPA statement is essentially a nationwide waiver of environmental rules for the indefinite future,” Cynthia Giles, former assistant EPA administrator for enforcement and compliance, told ABC News in a statement. “It tells companies across the country that they will not face enforcement even if they emit unlawful air and water pollution in violation of environmental laws, so long as they claim that those failures are in some way “caused” by the virus pandemic.”

Gina McCarthy, CEO and president of NRDC, said in an email to Electrek that although they agree that there should be greater flexibility in this time of crisis the EPA is still responsible for our health and shouldn’t be throwing their hands up and giving corporations “an open license to pollute.”

Last week we talked about how lower economic activity can mean lower emissions (until they come roaring back on the up-turn). It’s – at the very least – a slim silver lining to economic disruption. But the white house has different plans.

The EPA announced that they are suspending enforcement of environmental rules because staffing shortages from COVID19 have made it hard for corporations to keep up with deadlines and accountability requirements. They announced in a memo that the “consequences may affect the ability of an operation to meet enforceable limitations on air emissions and water discharges, requirements for the management of hazardous waste, or requirements to ensure and provide safe drinking water.”

“This EPA statement is essentially a nationwide waiver of environmental rules for the indefinite future,” Cynthia Giles, former assistant EPA administrator for enforcement and compliance, told ABC News in a statement. “It tells companies across the country that they will not face enforcement even if they emit unlawful air and water pollution in violation of environmental laws, so long as they claim that those failures are in some way “caused” by the virus pandemic.”

Gina McCarthy, CEO and president of NRDC, said in an email to Electrek that although they agree that there should be greater flexibility in this time of crisis the EPA is still responsible for our health and shouldn’t be throwing their hands up and giving corporations “an open license to pollute.”

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