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  • Staff Scientists: Trump’s Environmental Rollbacks Find Opposition Within

    March 27, 2020 – The New York Times

    When the civil servants were directed to undo Obama’s Clean Power Plan and create a more coal-friendly version, some of those who remained at the EPA made sure the documents accompanying the proposed replacement included the fact that increased coal pollution would cause 1,400 new premature deaths a year. The EPA later deleted the number from the final rule, but Richard Revesz, an expert on environmental law at New York University, said it would still play a role in the legal fight against the rollback. “That number was a devastatingly bad conclusion for the administration,” he said.

  • When Safety Rules on Oil Drilling Were Changed, Some Staff Objected. Those Notes Were Cut.

    February 26, 2020 – The Wall Street Journal

    As the offshore oil industry’s federal regulator completed its overhaul of a major well-drilling safety rule in 2018, Scott Angelle, director of the Bureau of Safety and Environmental Enforcement, told a staff engineer to delete language from memos showing that the changes would contradict guidance from the agency’s own engineers. The internal correspondence could prove a liability, as environmental groups challenge the agency’s rationale for its decision. “What these communications show is that the agency was not relying on expertise,” said Richard Revesz, dean emeritus of New York University School of Law and an expert on environmental and regulatory legal matters. “It was making a political decision that went against the advice of the experts and the experts were being sidelined.”

  • New See-No-Evil Trump Rule Undercuts Climate-Change Efforts

    January 15, 2020 – San Francisco Chronicle (Opinion)

    It is impossible to ignore the incongruity of the Trump administration’s latest attack on environmental protection with the dire effects of climate change now being felt around the world. Thousands have fled burning towns in Australia and California, helpless in the face of catastrophic wildfires, and Arctic sea ice is declining at an unprecedented rate. Rather than develop even modest solutions to this grave crisis, the Trump administration has focused its efforts on a newly unveiled proposal to weaken the United States’ bedrock environmental law, the National Environmental Policy Act, enacted in 1970.

  • White House Unveils Plan to Speed Big Projects Permits

    January 10, 2020 – Reuters

    Trump’s efforts to cut regulatory red tape have been praised by industry. But they have so far largely backfired by triggering waves of lawsuits that the administration has lost in court, according to a running tally by the New York University School of Law’s Institute for Policy Integrity.

  • Trump Moves to Exempt Big Projects From Environmental Review

    January 9, 2020 – The New York Times

    The White House on Thursday will introduce the first major changes to the nation’s benchmark environmental protection law in more than three decades. Richard L. Revesz, a professor of environmental law at New York University, said he did not believe the changes would hold up in court. In fact, he argued, it is more likely that federal agencies will be sued for inadequate reviews, “thereby leading to far longer delays than if they had done a proper analysis in the first place.”

  • The Trump Administration Just Snuck Through Its Most Devious Coal Subsidy Yet

    December 23, 2019 – Vox

    When a cost is placed on CO2 — either explicitly, through a tax or cap-and-trade system, or implicitly, by subsidizing clean competitors — the result is a more effective market, not a “distorted” one. Externalities have been internalized. It is the companies that aren’t being charged for CO2 pollution that are distorting the market. (The Institute for Policy Integrity has a good report on Capacity Markets and Externalities.)

  • Trump Administration’s Arctic Drilling Plans a ‘Blatant Disregard for Science’

    October 1, 2019 – Newsweek

    Jayni Foley Hein, the Natural Resources Director for the Institute for Policy Integrity at NYU School of Law, told Newsweek, “The analysis here is a disservice to the American people, who deserve to understand the full environmental and economic implications of drilling in ANWR for an estimated 70 years.” Hein says this move from the Trump White House Arctic National Wildlife Refuge is a 180-degree turn on previous administrations, who have sought to protect the Refuge since its inception in 1960.

  • On Acknowledging Humans’ Role in Climate Change: ‘That Ship Has Sailed’

    September 26, 2019 – The Washington Post

    Environmental groups, along with several Democratic attorneys general, have filed more than 100 lawsuits challenging environmental rollbacks under the Trump administration. While many cases are ongoing, many have led to rulings favorable to environmentalists. Of 28 cases that have been resolved, according to a tracker from the New York University Law School’s Institute for Policy Integrity, the administration has prevailed only twice.

  • Clutching to Fossil Fuels, and Losing, in the Era of Climate Change

    May 14, 2019 – The Hill (Opinion)

    Together, these court decisions amount to a stunning defeat of the “energy dominance” agenda and reveal that the Trump administration cannot operate outside the bounds of the law.

  • Trump Drive to Boost Fossil Fuels Hits a Wall in Federal Courts

    April 29, 2019 – Bloomberg

    The decision is a telling indication of rulings to come, as the first one targeting a final environmental repeal by the Trump administration, said Jayni Foley Hein, natural resources director at New York University’s Institute for Policy Integrity. “It’s emblematic of the challenges this administration has faced in trying to carry out the energy dominance agenda. When you are weakening or rolling back environmental standards, you’re going to be challenged in the court, and there are certain substantive and procedural hurdles you have to overcome in order to carry that out.”