Last week, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) announced the release of their Year in Review report for 2017-2018. As the news release notes, the agency led by Administrator Scott Pruitt has achieved a great deal in just one short-year: “EPA finalized 22 deregulatory actions, which could save Americans more than $1 billion in regulatory costs.” Highlights noted by the EPA include:
- Eliminated, substantially or entirely, seven sites from the National Priorities List of contaminated sites; only two sites were removed the previous year. EPA also awarded $60 million in Brownfields cleanup grants to local communities.
- Acted on 322 State Implementation Plans (SIPs) and turned one Federal Implementation Plan into a SIP each month, since March 1, 2017.
- Approved 3,000 Total Maximum Daily Loads and cut the amount of time it took the Agency to review state water quality standards in half (from 120 days to 60).
- Awarded $25 million in water infrastructure loans; disbursed $1.4 billion in State Revolving Funds to improve our nation’s water quality; and, awarded $100 million to Flint, Mich. for water infrastructure upgrades.
- Cleared the Agency’s backlog of new chemical submissions — containing 600 new submissions as of January 2017 — and ensured that all new chemicals coming to market received a safety determination within about 90 days.
The report also quotes E&E Legal Senior Policy Fellow Steve Milloy, a Trump Administrator EPA Transition Team member, and an expert on the use of sound science. Under its “Sue & Settle” section, the report includes the following: Steve Milloy, senior policy fellow, Energy and Environmental Legal Institute: “By ending the Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) ‘Sue and Settle’ practice as well as improving transparency in consent decrees and settlement agreements, EPA Administrator Scott Pruitt is following through on President Trump’s promise to ‘drain the swamp.’” (10/16/17)