Time to get your comment on – the EPA needs you!
EPA is calling for public comments on its regulations – the ones that protect us from polluted air and water, toxic chemicals, and climate change.
The EPA needs to hear that Americans care about these protections, and are watching. We will not go backwards!
The comment period ends on May 15th, so pledge to take action today!
1. Attend or call in to one of the the public comment sessions that the EPA is holding, and offer your comments. Attending one of the in-person or teleconference sessions will make sure your voice is heard.
a) See the list of public comment sessions below.
b) Click the link to sign up for the session (note: not all sessions require pre-registration).
c) Think about what you will say in advance, using the suggestions below.
2. Whether or not you can attend or call into one of the public meetings, also submit a comment in writing. Click here to be taken to the comment page. Click the Comment Now! button to submit your comment.
When writing or planning your public comments, ask yourself: what worries you about cutting environmental protections? Tell a story about your experience and why you care about environmental protection, why you value clean air, water, land, or are concerned about climate change.
Be as specific as you can. Make your comment personal, and add specific details about the regulation(s) you want to protect if you have them. Have these environmental protections had a beneficial effect on your community (where you live, where you grew up), and would your community be harmed if these protections were removed? Original comments count more than comments that are copied from others. Write as much (or as little) as you can, but write something! Let us know if you need help or suggestions.
PUBLIC COMMENT SESSIONS
Public comment sessions (check here for the latest details):
- April 24 - The Office of Air and Radiation plans a public meeting via teleconference on April 24, 2017 at 11:00 a.m. EDT. (no pre-registration required)
- April 25 - The Office of Small and Disadvantaged Business Utilization plans a public meeting on April 25, 2017 from 10 a.m. - 1 p.m. EDT. SOLD OUT
- May 1 - The Office of Chemical Safety and Pollution Prevention (OCSPP) will host two public meetings on May 1, 2017:
- May 2 - The Office of Water is planning a virtual listening session for the public on May 2, 2017 from 11 a.m. - 2 p.m. (details TBD)
- May 9 - The Office of Land and Emergency Management (OLEM), will host a public meeting to obtain public feedback on May 9, 2017, from 9:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. EDT in Arlington, VA.
What can I comment on?
The EPA's mission is to protect human health and the environment. The regulations developed by the offices of air, water, land, and chemical safety are intended to implement the various environmental laws that Congress has passed since the 1970s, such as the Clean Air Act and Clean Water Act.
The New Source Review Program requires companies to get a permit if they want to build a new facility that will emit a substantial amount of air pollution, or substantially renovate an existing facility. The permit specifies how much pollution the facility is allowed to emit. This program is being targeted by industry groups.
Health impacts of air pollution – Air pollution such as particulate matter leads to health problems such asthma, and exacerbates cardiovascular disease. Low-income communities and communities of color experience a disproportionate share of these impacts.
Climate change – the Office of Air and Radiation regulates carbon dioxide emissions, in an effort to reduce or slow climate change. The Obama administration created the Clean Power Plan through an extensive process of reviewing the science and seeking public comment. President Trump issued an Executive Order directing the agency to withdraw and rewrite the plan.
Methane: "Research released Tuesday [April 11], commissioned by the Environmental Defense Fund, finds jobs associated with detecting and repairing methane leaks are scattered throughout 60 companies in 45 states. The majority of those companies are small businesses and have experienced up 30 percent business growth in states with methane regulations." - Politico
Coal plant toxic discharge rule: "In yet another win for the coal industry, EPA has accepted its request to reconsider a 2015 regulation governing toxic discharges from coal-fired power plants into American waterways, Annie Snider reports. The rule sets the first updates in 30 years on facilities' discharges of heavy metals and other toxics into rivers and streams, and would require capital investments at nearly every plant across the country. In a letter sent Tuesday to the president of the Environmental Council of States, Pruitt said "EPA intends to consider the petitioner's request for relief from the deadlines in the Final Rule." - Politico
Waters of the US Rulemaking "Industry groups with close ties to Pruitt are looking at whether the redo of the Waters of the U.S. regulation could be effectively privatized by hiring outside lawyers to craft it, Pro's Annie Snider reports. But legal experts are already suggesting that such an unusual move would raise a host of ethical questions and likely limit the public's view into how decisions are made about which streams, wetlands and lakes across the country receive federal protection under the Clean Water Act." -Politico