Politics EPA rescinds Trump guidance that created exceptions to water pollution protections
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The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) is rescinding Trump-era guidance that established exceptions to certain water pollution protections.
The EPA this week that it was nixing the Jan. 14 guidance, which established exceptions to which types of facilities would require agency permits to discharge pollutants in accordance with a Supreme Court ruling.
Last year, the Supreme Court that a permit is required not only for direct discharges of pollutants into federally regulated waters but also for discharges into groundwater that are the "functional equivalent" because they eventually also make their way into regulated waters.
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Welcome to Thursday's Overnight Energy & Environment, your source for the latest news focused on energy, the environment and beyond. Subscribe here: thehill.com/newsletter-signup.Today we're looking at House Democrats' proposed clean electricity payment program (now renamed the Clean Electricity Performance Program), the nomination of a new energy regulator and the latest move from the EPA on Alaska's Bristol Bay.For The Hill, we're RachelToday we're looking at House Democrats' proposed clean electricity payment program (now renamed the Clean Electricity Performance Program), the nomination of a new energy regulator and the latest move from the EPA on Alaska's Bristol Bay.
Following that decision, the EPA under then-President Trump issued the now-rescinded stating that if the pollution became diluted or otherwise changed between when it was discharged and when it reached the regulated water, it may not require a permit.
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It also said that facilities are "less likely" to require permits if they're designed in a way that mitigates their discharges.
In a memo getting rid of the guidance, the Biden administration argued that it had been issued "without proper deliberation" and because the part of the guidance relating to facility design is not "reflected in or consistent with" the Supreme Court ruling.
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BELGRADE, Serbia (AP) — Several thousand people protested in Serbia on Saturday demanding a ban on planned lithium mining in the Balkan country as well as a resolution to scores of other environmental issues that made the region one of the most polluted in Europe. The rally in downtown Belgrade was organized by about 30 ecological groups who recently gained popularity in Serbia amid widespread disillusionment with mainstream politicians and amid major pollution problems facing the region.
The document, written by Radhika Fox, who leads the agency's Office of Water, said that the EPA was evaluating its next steps and that the agency will make site-specific decisions on whether relevant discharges need permits.
In December, when it released a draft of the guidance, the Trump administration that its decision would help industry understand when they need permits.
But critics said at the time that it could end up leaving out facilities that ultimately pollute protected waters.
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