Update 02/11/15: The problems with California's underground injection control program are far worse than originally reported. It has now been revealed that California regulators with DOGGR not only permitted hundreds of wastewater injection wells but also thousands more wells injecting fluids for “enhanced oil recovery” into aquifers protected under the federal Safe Drinking Water...read more
I've often wondered if EPA actually stands for Environmental Pillaging Act, so contrary to environmental protection are the policies and recommendations that often come from this government organization.
However, in a victory for environmentalists, the US Appeals Court ruled against not allowing states to tighten up air quality standards.
From 1990 when the Clean Air Act was introduced, to 2006, states were allowed to monitor industrial facilities, making sure that they weren't breaching any pollution level laws. Then W and his administration decided that ensuring pollution levels don't exceed acceptable limits was a bad idea and introduced new rules kyboshing the monitoring, essentially leaving polluting facilities unchecked. (Even for the most hardened skeptic this seems to lack basic common sense non?)
The tide turned however, when yesterday the US Appeals court re-instated the mandatory monitoring of industrial facilities, returning power to the states to regulate. According to the Wall Street Journal, the agency has a poor track record in overturning appeals court decisions so let's hope that trend continues. In the spirit of the Olympics - enviros 1 - polluters - 0.