Air Compliance

Current Clean Air Act Impacts Under the Trump Administration

Hear about how the Clean Air Act is undergoing dramatic changes under the Trump Administration, especially regarding 1990's guidance memos by EPA.

Since the 1990’s a number of guidance memos by the EPA have governed how industry approaches the Clean Air Act (CAA). In our weekly Coffee & Compliance series webinar, Darrin Gambelin, a partner with Downey Brand, shed light on some of the current updates to the memos regard air toxics and “begin construction“, authorization.

The CAA has been evolving under the Trump Administration with potential impacts to state and local air districts as the federal regulations typically set the “floor” for regulatory requirements. As he noted, if the regulatory floor drops some number of states will also drop their regulatory requirements. However, some segment already had more stringent air requirements and are unlikely to be impacted by the changes at the federal level. As this is an election year, all these changes could be reversed with a new administration. However, memos are difficult if not impossible to challenge in the courts but have less permanent impact as new administrations can write and implement new memos.

Formal rule making has a longer lasting impact, but needs to go through a more intense process. So far, the Trump Administration has approached changes to the Clean Air Act via both methodologies. For more, hear Darrin’s take on the impact that the Trump Administration has had on the Clean Air Act.

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