New Rule: Polluters Can Appeal Judgments, But No One Else Can

TNS via ZUMA

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President Trump plans to propose eliminating the ability of local communities to appeal the EPA’s decisions on pollution permits:

The Environmental Protection Agency is preparing to weaken rules that for the past quarter-century have given communities a voice in deciding how much pollution may legally be released by nearby power plants and factories. The changes would eliminate the ability of individuals or community advocates to appeal against E.P.A.-issued pollution permits before a panel of agency judges.

That sounds bad. Still, I suppose the silver lining here is that polluters will also lose the ability to appeal judgments that go against—

However, the industrial permit-holders could still appeal to the panel, known as the Environmental Appeals Board, to allow them to increase their pollution.

Oh. Even industry lawyers are apparently a little taken aback by this proposal, which follows a decision a few months ago to weaken New Source Review rules that require permits for power plant upgrades. Keep in mind that this is all from the president who says no one in the history of the country has been more committed to clean air and water than him.

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SIX TRUTHS

Reclaiming power from those who abuse it often starts with telling the truth. And in "This Is How Authoritarians Get Defeated," MoJo's Monika Bauerlein unpacks six truths to remember during the homestretch of an election where democracy, truth, and decency are on the line.

Truth #1: The chaos is the point.

Truth #2: Team Reality is bigger than it seems.

Truth #3: Facebook owns this.

Truth #4: When we go to work, we're in the fight.

Truth #5: It's about minority rule.

Truth #6: The only thing that can save us is…us.

Please take a moment to see how all these truths add up, because what happens in the weeks and months ahead will reverberate for at least a generation and we better be prepared.

And if you think journalism like Mother Jones'—that calls it like it is, that will never acquiesce to power, that looks where others don't—can help guide us through this historic, high-stakes moment, and you're able to right now, please help us reach our $350,000 goal by October 31 with a donation today. It's all hands on deck for democracy.

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