Carper to EPA: Dismantling mercury emissions rule puts Americans' health at risk

EPA proposes rule change that would limit pollution control for years to come

Environmental groups say the regulation has contributed to an 85 per cent reduction in mercury emissions in the past decade.

Environmental advocacy groups criticized the move, while the National Mining Association praised it.

If adopted, the change would prevent regulators from calculating positive health effects - known as "co-benefits" - that come from reducing pollutants other than those being targeted.

Janet McCabe, a former air-quality official in the Obama administration's EPA, called the proposal part of "the quiet dismantling of the regulatory framework" for the federal government's environmental protections.

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Gers dominated Rodgers' men but Gerrard know a Parkhead side that has chalked up seven straight league titles will bounce back. "They're still the team to beat".


In a statement, the EPA said Friday the administration was "providing regulatory certainty" by more accurately estimating the costs and benefits of the Obama administration crackdown on mercury and other toxic emissions from smokestacks.

Under the direction of acting administrator Andrew Wheeler, the EPA is now questioning whether it was appropriate to include these additional benefits. In a statement, she said the warming climate, for example, might affect mercury's impact on the environment but the EPA's proposal could make it harder to address that.

Representatives of the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) in the U.S. have proposed going back on a previous endorsement of limits on mercury pollution. The federal government is required to take into account both the costs and health benefits when considering pollution regulations.

The Mercury and Air Toxics Standards (MATS) rule has been in place for years, and energy companies that own coal-fired power plants are already in compliance. The standards help meet the country's commitments under the Minamata Convention on Mercury. The federal Energy Information Administration says US coal consumption in 2018 is expected to be at its lowest level in almost four decades. Today, coal plant closures continue not because of the MATS rule but because coal can't compete with cheaper and relatively cleaner natural gas.

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"Reworking the mercury rule, which the E.P.A. considers the priciest clean air regulation ever put forth in terms of annual cost to industry, would represent a victory for the coal industry, and in particular for Robert E. Murray, an important former client of Mr. Wheeler's from his days as a lobbyist".

In December the administration proposed a revision that would allow coal-fired generators to emit more Carbon dioxide per megawatt-hour of electricity generated.

The proposal, which now goes up for public comment, is the latest Trump administration move that changes estimates of the costs and payoffs of regulations in arguing for relaxing Obama-era environmental protections.

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The defense rendered the Heisman Trophy victor into a run-first scrambler instead of a downfield-playmaker until the second half. No. 1 Alabama downed No. 4 Oklahoma 45-34 to complete the national championship pairing with No. 2 Clemson on January 7 (8 p.m.


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