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Recent Projects

  • Public Comments

    Comments to BLM on Foidel Creek Mine Expansion

    December 21, 2018

    A proposed expansion of the Foidel Creek Mine in Colorado would allow Peabody Energy to recover nearly five million additional tons of federal coal, extending the mine’s life by an additional two years. We submitted joint comments that critique the Bureau of Land Management’s (BLM) environmental assessment of the expansion, which miscalculates downstream emissions and fails to monetize the climate damages those emissions will produce.

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  • Public Comments

    Supplemental Comments to NHTSA and EPA on Vehicle Emissions Standards

    December 21, 2018

    In October, we submitted comments to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) and Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) critiquing the proposed Safer Affordable Fuel-Efficient Vehicles Rule. We now have also submitted supplemental comments rebutting an analysis, prepared by NERA Economic Consulting and Trinity Consultants and submitted by the Alliance of Automobile Manufacturers, in support of the proposed rule.

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  • Academic Articles/Working Papers

    Environmental Federalism in a Dark Time

    December 20, 2018

    The principle of federalism has become something of a rallying cry in recent efforts by the Trump Administration and its allies to scale back environmental regulation. For example, during his short and troubled tenure, former EPA Administrator Scott Pruitt argued that the federal government has become too intrusive and that states should be returned to a position of “regulatory primacy” on environmental matters. Some states have responded to the impeding federal retreat by forging ahead. For example, California has continued to take aggressive steps to curb greenhouse gas emissions, and has even taken steps to project its influence internationally. However, despite these hopeful signs of resistance, the net effect of the Trump Administration’s efforts to scale back federal environmental policy is likely to undermine rather than energize state environmental policymaking, especially in Republican-dominated and swing states, where the climate policy vacuum is most acute.

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  • Public Comments

    Comments to EPA on Reconsideration of Methane Standards for New Sources

    December 17, 2018

    In 2016, EPA finalized a set of performance standards for new, reconstructed, and modified sources of methane and volatile organic compounds (VOCs) in the oil and natural gas sector. A recent proposal, however, aims to weaken the 2016 rule in a variety of ways, with the goal of reducing the regulatory “burden” on industry. We submitted comments that focus on inadequacies in the cost-benefit analysis accompanying the proposed rule.

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  • Public Comments

    Comments on Proposed Regulation to Require Drug Price Disclosures

    December 17, 2018

    The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) recently proposed a rule that would require pharmaceutical companies to disclose the list prices of prescription drugs in television ads. We submitted comments pointing out flaws in the agency’s analysis of the proposal’s likely costs and benefits.

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  • Academic Articles/Working Papers

    Regulation and Distribution

    December 17, 2018

    This article, published in the New York University Law Review, tackles a question that has vexed the administrative state for the last half century: how to seriously take account of the distributional consequences of regulation. Academic literature has largely accepted the view that distributional concerns should be moved out of the regulatory domain and into Congress’s tax policy portfolio. In doing so, it has overlooked the fact that tax policy is ill suited to provide compensation for significant environmental, health, and safety harms. And the congressional gridlock that has bedeviled us for several decades makes this enterprise even more of a nonstarter. The time has come to make distributional consequences a core concern of the regulatory state – otherwise, future socially beneficial regulations could well encounter significant roadblocks. This article provides the blueprint for the establishment of a standing, broadly constituted interagency body charged with addressing serious negative consequences of regulatory measures on particular groups.

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  • Public Comments

    Comments on Homeland Security’s “Public Charge” Rule Affecting Applicants for Permanent Residency

    December 11, 2018

    The Department of Homeland Security (DHS) recently proposed a rule that would substantially expand DHS’s ability to deny applications for lawful permanent residency by deeming immigrants likely to become “public charges.” We submitted comments critiquing the cost-benefit analysis accompanying DHS’s proposal.

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  • News

    Roundup of Trump-Era Deregulation in the Courts

    December 10, 2018

    The Trump administration has undertaken numerous deregulatory actions through rule suspensions; repeals; rescissions; efforts to weaken regulations through guidance, memoranda, amendments, or replacements; and more. Many of these actions have been challenged in court and decisions have been reached in several cases.

    The Institute for Policy Integrity maintains a publicly available list of the outcomes of those lawsuits. This “Roundup,” which we update regularly, has been cited by the New York Times, the Wall Street Journal, the Washington Post, Bloomberg, E&E News, and the Brookings Institution.

    The Roundup provides an overview of each court decision, with relevant links to the government actions and court rulings. It also tallies the successful and unsuccessful outcomes for the administration for ease of reference. Updates should be submitted to bethany.davisnoll@nyu.edu.

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  • Public Comments

    Comments to FERC on Rio Grande Natural Gas Project

    December 3, 2018

    The Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) prepared a Draft Environmental Impact Statement (DEIS) for the Rio Grande LNG Project. Despite quantifying over 8 million metric tons of carbon dioxide-equivalent emissions per year from operations, FERC does not account for the climate effects of these emissions. We submitted joint comments that offer a detailed rejection of FERC’s arbitrary and misleading rationale for failing to monetize the project’s climate effects. We urge the agency to apply social cost of greenhouse gases estimates.

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  • Public Comments

    Comments on Environmental Impact Statement for Changes to Grand Staircase-Escalante Monument

    November 30, 2018

    The Bureau of Land Management (BLM) recently released an Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) for the Grand Staircase-Escalante Monument and Kanab-Escalante Planning Area. We submitted comments explaining why the agency should analyze the impacts of each land management alternative using Social Cost of Greenhouse Gases estimates.

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