New Rule: Polluters Can Appeal Judgments, But No One Else Can

TNS via ZUMA

President Trump plans to propose eliminating the ability of local communities to appeal the EPA’s decisions on pollution permits:

The Environmental Protection Agency is preparing to weaken rules that for the past quarter-century have given communities a voice in deciding how much pollution may legally be released by nearby power plants and factories. The changes would eliminate the ability of individuals or community advocates to appeal against E.P.A.-issued pollution permits before a panel of agency judges.

That sounds bad. Still, I suppose the silver lining here is that polluters will also lose the ability to appeal judgments that go against—

However, the industrial permit-holders could still appeal to the panel, known as the Environmental Appeals Board, to allow them to increase their pollution.

Oh. Even industry lawyers are apparently a little taken aback by this proposal, which follows a decision a few months ago to weaken New Source Review rules that require permits for power plant upgrades. Keep in mind that this is all from the president who says no one in the history of the country has been more committed to clean air and water than him.

FACT:

Mother Jones was founded as a nonprofit in 1976 because we knew corporations and the wealthy wouldn't fund the type of hard-hitting journalism we set out to do.

Today, reader support makes up about two-thirds of our budget, allows us to dig deep on stories that matter, and lets us keep our reporting free for everyone. If you value what you get from Mother Jones, please join us with a tax-deductible donation today so we can keep on doing the type of journalism 2019 demands.

We Recommend

Latest

Sign up for our newsletters

Subscribe and we'll send Mother Jones straight to your inbox.

Get our award-winning magazine

Save big on a full year of investigations, ideas, and insights.

Subscribe

Support our journalism

Help Mother Jones' reporters dig deep with a tax-deductible donation.

Donate

We have a new comment system! We are now using Coral, from Vox Media, for comments on all new articles. We'd love your feedback.