Aug
11
2015
11

So, it turns out that that EPA ecological disaster hit the Navajos.

Of course it did. The EPA worries about coastal urban liberals, first and foremost. Native American tribes? Not so much – well, not until EPA incompetence turns a river a color that I normally associate with melted Velveeta. Then they kind of get on the stick. Eventually…

The spill happened Friday when a team of Environmental Protection Agency workers accidentally released 3 million gallons of wastewater containing heavy metals, including lead and arsenic, from the Gold King Mine in Silverton, Colorado, the agency said.

[snip]

Though EPA administrator Gina McCarthy said at a news conference today that the agency’s slow response was out of caution, Navajo Nation President Russell Begaye said the slow response is frustrating the Navajo people, who are “weeping every day” and in “dire need of clean water,” not only for drinking, but also to sustain their organic farms and ranches.

(more…)

Written by in: Politics | Tags: ,
Jun
29
2015
8

And we end what was a disappointing Supreme Court term…

…with a win on the EPA, at least. A bit of a mild win, but at least the scoreboard isn’t empty.

The Supreme Court overturned the Obama administration’s landmark air quality rule on Monday, ruling the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) did not properly consider the costs of the regulation.

In a 5-4 ruling, the justices ruled that the EPA should have taken into account the costs to utilities and others in the power sector before even deciding whether to set limits for the toxic air pollutants it regulated in 2011.

(more…)

Written by in: Politics | Tags:
Jun
28
2015
3

Reminder: there are actually more Supreme Court decisions tomorrow.

And if Scalia writes the EPA decision (there is a remarkable amount of analysis out there trying to figure out who writes which Supreme Court decisions*)… well. They may have to end up encasing it in concrete and shooting it into the Sun. So, there’s that to look forward to, at least.

Moe Lane

*I think that the general consensus is that the event that might have suggested that Scalia would not get the EPA case was actually not a triggering event in this case, and at any rate Mars was in Taurus when the white heifer gave birth to a two-headed calf and the Ouija board started spelling out 19th Century British dance hall lyrics. You see: apparently, this is all like Kremlinology, only without the scientific rigor. I’m just impressed that the Court can still keep a secret…

Jun
25
2014
3

The EPA… has had some convenient hard drive crashes, too.

Uh-huh.

The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and the IRS share a problem: officials say they cannot provide the emails a congressional committee has requested because an employee’s hard drive crashed.

EPA Administrator Gina McCarthy confirmed to the House Oversight Committee Wednesday that her staff is unable to provide lawmakers all of the documents they have requested on the proposed Pebble Mine in Alaska, because of a 2010 computer crash.

The hard drive in question was assigned to Philip North. And this is the part… this is just the part.

Uh- huh.

Moe Lane (crosspost)

Jun
16
2014
1

Apostate Louisiana singled out for EPA’s punishment.

The last sentence in the excerpt from this article (‘Despite low coal use, La. must reduce CO2 by 40%’) is inaccurate.

When the Obama administration announced its new plan to cut carbon dioxide from power plants to combat climate change, Louisiana found itself on the hook for a 40 percent reduction over the next 15 years or so — one of the bigger decreases demanded in the state-by-state goals.

The size of the proposed cut surprised many because Louisiana doesn’t rely heavily on coal, which generates more carbon dioxide than most other fuels.

Neither state regulators nor the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency can provide a clear reason for why Louisiana’s reduction is so large.

It is more accurate to say that neither wants to provide said clear reason.  But we’re all adults here, right?  Louisiana got hit by this because of three things. (more…)

Jun
02
2014
5

The UMWA discovers that supporting Democrats got them two things.

Jack, and… well, this is a family website.

Some labor unions, groups generally considered loyally Democratic, rebelled on Monday after the EPA released its new regulations, which studies have suggested will carry hefty economic costs.

United Mine Workers of America (UMWA) president Cecil Roberts blasted the proposal, saying it would leave tens of thousands of the union’s members unemployed.

“The proposed rule … will lead to long-term and irreversible job losses for thousands of coal miners, electrical workers, utility workers, boilermakers, railroad workers and others without achieving any significant reduction of global greenhouse gas emissions,” Roberts said in a statement.

According to a UMWA analysis, Roberts said, the rule will cause 75,000 job losses in the coal sector by 2020, rising to 152,000 by 2035.

(more…)

Jun
02
2014
6

Tweet of the Day, Boehner Is Absolutely Right On This EPA Regulation Nonsense edition.

Sometimes you just simply have to spell it out in words with as few syllables as possible:

(more…)

Jun
05
2013
11

EPA confesses to handing out farmers’ personal information to activist-lawyers.

Executive summary (H/T: AoSHQ): the EPA just admitted that, yeah, it gave out a bunch of personal information about farmers and ranchers – including phone numbers, email addresses, regular addresses, and whatnot – to various environmental groups.  The EPA also is kind of admitting that, yeah, maybe it shouldn’t have given out that information, which is why they’ve asked those groups to give that information back (note that the EPA apparently didn’t even bother to ask that the groups give back the information without making copies first).  This is not amusing Senator John Thune, because a) the damage is done; b) apparently nobody in the EPA talks to Agriculture & Homeland Security, which both decided not to make this particular information available in a database; and c) there’s a question about whether or not all of this violates the Privacy Act of 1974.

Before we go into the specific point about this situation that I wish to highlight, let me make a general observation to people who like big government; there are a lot of stories like this out there, just waiting to be found.  There always are.  But right now, we have a combination of factors that will bring these stories to the surface: there is an existing pattern of consistent government overreach, an administration that is increasingly being associated with heavy-handed, somewhat incompetent use of policy as a weapon, and a media that has just internalized the revelation that the government is reading their mail, too.  This could go on all summer, and probably will.

But back to the EPA!  Please, pay close attention to this part:

The EPA said the data was related to farms in 29 states with “concentrated animal feeding operations” and that the released information was part of the agency’s commitment to “ensure clean water and public-health protection.”

The groups wanted the information, they say, because such large-scale operations are a major source of water pollution and they want to hold the EPA accountable for enforcing the Clean Water Act.

Critics have characterized Earth Justice and the organizations as being “extremist groups” and say the released information included data on family farmers who feed fewer than 1,000 animals, which excludes them from having to comply with the Act.

(more…)

Apr
09
2013
11

The War On Bees?

One of the problems with policy positions is that, well, sometimes the knowledge that you need to figure out what the heck is really going on is kind of obscure.  Case in point: a lawsuit going on right now involving the EPA over a particular kind of pesticide, and its effect on bees (which recently had the equivalent of a deadly pandemic).  Cue the New York Times:

Last year, researchers identified a virus as a major cause of the die-off; the latest suspect is a class of pesticides called neonicotinoids, which are used to protect common agricultural seeds, including corn. The insecticides are systemic, which means they persist throughout the life of the plant. Scientists have demonstrated that exposure to these chemicals damages bees’ brain function, including their ability to home in on the hive.

In mid-March, environmental groups and beekeepers sued the Environmental Protection Agency to persuade it to withdraw its approval of two of the most widely used neonicotinoids. The manufacturers of these chemicals — notably Syngenta and Bayer CropScience — have claimed again and again that they are safe. And it is true that bees face other stresses. Even so, beekeepers managed to keep their hives relatively healthy before the increased use of neonicotinoids began in 2005.

Note that the NYT didn’t actually say that the virus was caused by neonicotinoids (which is good, because it’s not*): but they are kind of implying it.
(more…)

Jan
15
2013
7

Some update links on Lisa Jackson.

Some links on the Lisa Jackson / Richard Windsor sudden-retirement “thing.”


Watts Up With That?
:

U.S. Senator David Vitter (R-La.) made the following statement today after the outgoing U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) Administrator Lisa Jackson released a portion of her emails that have been under scrutiny for using a secondary email alias, “Richard Windsor.” The EPA has also redacted names in the emails using a Freedom of Information Act exemption that does not apply to the released emails.

“This strikes me as incredibly fishy and begs a number of important questions,” Vitter said.

(more…)

Jan
06
2013
3

Report: EPA head Lisa Jackson resigned in a huff over Keystone Pipeline.

Very interesting, if this NY Post report is true:

EPA chief Lisa Jackson suddenly resigned last week because she was convinced that President Obama is planning to green-light the controversial Keystone XL oil pipeline, The Post has learned.

“She was going to stay on until November or December,” said a Jackson insider. “But this changed it. She will not be the EPA head when Obama supports it [Keystone] getting built.”

…And if true: good news, and good riddance.  I’ve got nothing against other people’s religions per se, but I get a little cranky when radical theocratic extremists like Jackson try to impose their bizarre Gaia-worship on the rest of us.  And let’s not even get into the profoundly anti-scientific nature of the modern Greenies*.  Hopefully, the next EPA head Obama appoints won’t be so addicted to fuzzy thinking as Lisa Jackson was…

Moe Lane (crosspost)

*Particularly since Mark Lynas will be happy to do that for me, at least when it comes to Genetically Modified Organisms.  Note that Lynas is not entirely sound on the subject of the Greenies, considering that he still seems to think that the same people who are so profoundly messed up on GMOs and nuclear power yet somehow become infinitely more respectable when it comes to, say, global warming.  Still, I can’t find it in my heart to be too critical of a man who will dare praise Norman Borlaug** to a room full of environmentalists.

**Norman Borlaug?  Oh, he was an Iowan agronomist. Noteworthy for being a good wrestler in his youth and a devoted family man.  Oh, and the entire ‘saved a billion people from starving to death’ thing.

Dec
27
2012
3

Lisa Jackson forced out of EPA.

Ostensible reason:

[Lisa] Jackson, 50, a chemical engineer by training and a mom of two teenagers, offered no reason for her resignation other than saying she’s ready for “new challenges, time with my family and new opportunities to make a difference.” She said she was leaving the EPA “confident the ship is sailing in the right direction.”

Actual reason:

This month, at the prodding of congressional Republicans, the EPA’s inspector general said he was opening an inquiry into Jackson’s use of a secondary e-mail account for official business.She said she had the account — named “Richard Windsor” after the name of her dog and her former home in Windsor Township, N.J. — because her public e-mail address was well known.

This is what we call a “stealth” catastrophic meltdown: Jackson’s ability to function in DC effectively cratered as soon as this came out, anyway.  A pity that the Media won’t destroy this woman’s reputation for the way that she hypocritically  contravened good-government transparency, but at least she’s going to be gone.  And good riddance.

Moe Lane (crosspost)

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