Quantcast
Environmental News for a Healthier Planet and Life

5 Life-Saving Environmental Rules Industry Just Asked Trump to Attack

Popular
5 Life-Saving Environmental Rules Industry Just Asked Trump to Attack

By Keith Gaby

The Trump administration has already cancelled or sought to undermine 23 rules that protect our health and environment—including limits on toxic waste coal companies dump in rivers and regulations promoting more fuel-efficient cars.


But the administration is hungry for more, so it's asked companies, trade associations and lobbyists to suggest other rules they'd like the president to roll back.

Part of this wish-list process is being done in public and some, of course, is happening in private meetings. Rules from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), which has a whole "wish list" docket of its own, seem to be a particular target.

Here are five of the most brazen industry wishes submitted so far:

1. Coal tar: Trade association wants to end health studies.

The Pavement Coatings and Technology Council—a trade association for the paving industry—doesn't want research into the health dangers of the black top on which your children play foursquare.

It also doesn't want the government to study the impact of coal tar on "freshwater sediment contamination, indoor air quality, ambient air quality and effects on aquatic species."

2. Leaky oil and gas drill sites: Trade groups don't want to fix them.

Trade associations representing the oil and gas industry, including The Independent Petroleum Association of America, have filed comments attacking Clean Air Act standards requiring energy producers to take cost-effective steps to reduce methane and other air pollution.

3. Roofing fumes: Companies want no restrictions.

The National Roofing Contractors Association, a trade group representing roofing companies, doesn't want smog-forming chemicals restricted, saying such regulations "have been burdensome to our members."

4. Cancer-causing lubricants: Manufacturers say they should still be used.

No, not that kind of lubricant. The Independent Lubricant Manufacturers Association complained that the newly established chemical safety law may require its members to find replacement products for materials known to cause cancer in humans.

5. Toxic pesticide: Chemical manufacturer wants ban removed.

Don't try to pronounce chlorpyrifos, just know this pesticide hurts kids' health. That's what the EPA had concluded last year, and proposed banning it after years of research showing that it causes developmental problems in children and that there are alternatives.

That is, until Pruitt came along, and under pressure from the manufacturer, ignored his own scientists and rejected the proposed ban, saying it needs more study.

Why This Wish List Should Be Taken Seriously

The Trump administration seems to view all health and environmental safeguards as potentially suspicious. That's in spite of strong data showing that environmental rules actually help the economy—by preventing illness, missed school days, worker absence, productivity problems and early death.

President Trump, who encountered these safeguards as impediments to building hotels faster and cheaper, promised to rid the government of 75 percent of rules that get in industry's way.

With an EPA administrator more eager to please his boss than to protect Americans' health, it's now our job to fight back and protect our kids.

Keith Gaby is senior communications director for climate, health and political affairs at Environmental Defense Fund

The Gowanus Canal in Brooklyn, New York, a polluted nearly 2 mile-long waterway that is an EPA Superfund site. Jonathan Macagba / Moment / Getty Images

Thousands of Superfund sites exist around the U.S., with toxic substances left open, mismanaged and dumped. Despite the high levels of toxicity at these sites, nearly 21 million people live within a mile of one of them, according to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA).

Read More Show Less
EcoWatch Daily Newsletter
The National Weather Service station in Chatham, Massachusetts, near the edge of a cliff at the Monomoy National Wildlife Refuge. Bryce Williams / National Weather Service in Boston / Norton

A weather research station on a bluff overlooking the sea is closing down because of the climate crisis.

Read More Show Less
Trending
Amsterdam is one of the Netherlands' cities which already has "milieuzones," where some types of vehicles are banned. Unsplash / jennieramida

By Douglas Broom

  • If online deliveries continue with fossil-fuel trucks, emissions will increase by a third.
  • So cities in the Netherlands will allow only emission-free delivery vehicles after 2025.
  • The government is giving delivery firms cash help to buy or lease electric vehicles.
  • The bans will save 1 megaton of CO2 every year by 2030.

Cities in the Netherlands want to make their air cleaner by banning fossil fuel delivery vehicles from urban areas from 2025.

Read More Show Less
Protestors stage a demonstration against fracking in California on May 30, 2013 in San Francisco, California. Justin Sullivan / Getty Images

A bill that would have banned fracking in California died in committee Tuesday.

Read More Show Less
EXTREME-PHOTOGRAPHER / E+ / Getty Images

By Brett Wilkins

As world leaders prepare for this November's United Nations Climate Conference in Scotland, a new report from the Cambridge Sustainability Commission reveals that the world's wealthiest 5% were responsible for well over a third of all global emissions growth between 1990 and 2015.

Read More Show Less