EPN In Action November-December 2022
Welcome to your EPN In Action newsletter
EPN submitted comments on the Initial Regulatory Flexibility Analysis and Updated Economic Analysis for a proposed Toxic Substance Control Act (TSCA) rule on reporting and recordkeeping requirements for Per- and Polyfluoroalkyl Substances (PFAS) following the completion of a Small Business Advocacy Review panel.
EPN sent a letter recommending that EPA preserve and archive Unregulated Contaminant Monitoring Rule (UCMR5) samples from a representative set of public water systems with known PFAS contamination now so that PFAS measurements can be made when an acceptable analytical method has been identified.
EPN submitted comments on the World Health Organization’s (WHO) draft guidelines for PFAS in drinking water.
EPN submitted comments on EPA’s proposed designation of perfluorooctanoic acid (PFOA) and perfluorooctane sulfonate (PFOS) as hazardous substances under the Superfund Act.
EPN submitted a letter to EPA’s Office of Water supporting EPA Region 10’s Recommended Determination that would prohibit and restrict areas of the Bristol Bay watershed in Alaska from discharge of dredge and fill material as part of the Pebble Mining operation.
EPN submitted comments on the Greenhouse Gas Reduction Fund (GGRF), a grant program created by the Inflation Reduction Act (IRA) with a budget that is more than double EPA’s annual budget.
EPN provided a summary of the incredible growth of our pro bono Capacity-Building Technical Assistance Program in 2022.
EPN volunteers provided pro bono technical assistance to low-income communities and communities of color over 30 times in the last two months, for a total of over 200 communities.
EPN volunteers and community leaders joined an EPA Alumni Association Virtual Academy session about EPN’s pro bono technical assistance, and EPN volunteer Scott Gordon recorded a presentation on sewer systems to serve as a resource for utilities and communities interested in accessing federal infrastructure funding.
EPN and the EPA Alumni Association conducted virtual EPA recruitment events at Benedict College, Delaware State University, Whittier College, and George Mason University, all historically Black higher-education or minority-serving institutions.
EPN members were featured in dozens of media outlets and authored several op-eds. EPN continues to provide in-depth, insightful background information to numerous reporters, congressional staffers, and nonprofits.
2022 Overview: EPN’s Pro Bono Technical Assistance Program
EPN’s Work on PFAS
PFAS in the News
EPA’s PFAS Drinking Water Limit Could Have Long Coattails
December 12, 2022 / by
Annie Snider /
Betsy Southerland, former Director, Office of Science and Technology, EPA Office of Water, was quoted in this article discussing how drinking water treatment upgrades from the proposed regulation of PFOA and PFOS would capture other contaminants as well, resulting in massive improvements to drinking water quality.
Scientists Speak Out Against WHO Draft Guidelines for PFAS in Drinking Water
November 14, 2022 / by
Shannon Kelleher /
The New Lede
Linda Birnbaum, former Director of the National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences and the National Toxicology Program, and Betsy Southerland, former Director, Office of Science and Technology, EPA Office of Water, were quoted and EPN was mentioned in this article discussing the severe inadequacies of the World Health Organization’s draft guidelines for PFAS in drinking water. Linda was also quoted in a related article in Phys.org, and EPN’s comments on the draft guidelines were cited in an Inside EPA article.
Regulators Back CERCLA PFAS Rule But Note Implementation Concerns
November 7, 2022 / by
Suzanne Yohannan /
This article referenced EPN’s comments to EPA in support of the designation of PFOA and PFOS as hazardous substances under CERCLA.
EPN’s Work on Water and Air
Water and Air in the News
EPA Broadens Protections for U.S. Waterways, Reversing Trump
December 30, 2022 / by
Scott Dance /
The Washington Post
Kevin Minoli, former EPA Deputy General Counsel, was quoted in a Washington Post article regarding possible challenges to the Biden administration’s expanded definition of waters regulated by EPA. Kevin and Mark Ryan, former Assistant Regional Counsel, EPA Region 10, and former Special Assistant U.S. Attorney, were also quoted in an E&E News article about the revised water rule.
EPA to Tighten Nitrogen Oxide Limits for New Heavy Trucks
December 21, 2022 / by
Tom Krisher /
Margo Oge, former Director, EPA Office of Transportation and Air Quality, was quoted in this article about the recently-finalized standards to reduce nitrogen oxide emissions from heavy-duty vehicles and EPA’s plans to transition all diesel trucks to zero-emission vehicles. Margo was quoted in a related article in the Washington Post.
City Receives Half a Million Dollars for Air Monitoring After Report Reveals Elevated Cancer Risk
November 29, 2022 / by
Lisa Song /
Dan Costa, former National Program Director, Air, Climate, and Energy Research Program, EPA Office of Research and Development, was quoted in this article about EPA-funded air monitoring that will begin in Pascagoula, Mississippi, a city with elevated cancer risks due to industrial air pollution.
More Examples of EPN in the News
In addition to the articles above, EPN members contributed to a range of articles on topics such as the FY2023 budget appropriation, TSCA, COP27, PFAS, EPA nominees, and asbestos.
EPA’s 2023 Funding Takes a Baby Step Toward Rebuilding the Agency
December 27, 2022 / by
David Coursen /
Dave Coursen, former attorney, EPA Office of General Counsel, wrote this op-ed discussing the funding EPA has received from the 2023 budget appropriation and what the funding may or may not help the agency achieve.
EPA Readies Draft TSCA Cumulative Risk Documents for 2023 Release
December 20, 2022 / by
Maria Hegstad /
Bob Sussman, counsel to Safer Chemicals Healthy Families and former EPA Deputy Administrator, was quoted in this article discussing EPA’s intention to consider TSCA-specific cumulative risks for chemical exposures in general and for several high-priority phthalates.
D.C. Environmental Justice Advocates Join Push for Global Climate Justice at COP27
November 22, 2022 / by
Kayla Benjamin /
The Washington Informer
Mustafa Santiago Ali, Senior Vice President for Environmental Justice, National Wildlife Federation, former EPA Senior Advisor for Environmental Justice and Community Revitalization, and former EPA Assistant Associate Administrator for Environmental Justice, was quoted in this article about the commitments made at COP27 and the failure to make progress on emissions reductions.
Exclusive Lab Tests Show Toxic ‘Forever’ Chemicals in America’s Tap Water
November 21, 2022 / by
Lisa Fletcher, Andrea Nejman, Alex Brauer and Larry Deal /
ABC News 13
Linda Birnbaum, former Director, National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences, was quoted in this article regarding how widespread PFAS chemicals are, the many sources they may come from, and how they accumulate in the body.
Time Running Out for 3 Biden EPA Nominees
November 18, 2022 / by
Kevin Bogardus /
Gwendolyn Keyes Fleming (former EPA Chief of Staff), Stan Meiburg (former EPA Acting Deputy Administrator), and Bob Perciasepe (former EPA Deputy Administrator) were quoted in this article discussing whether the nominees picked to lead EPA’s air, enforcement, and solid waste offices will have confirmation votes before the end of the current Congress.
Asbestos Bill Gains Co-Sponsors as Supporters Weigh Lame Duck Push
November 8, 2022 / by
Diana DiGangi /
EPN was mentioned in this article about the possibility of asbestos-ban legislation appearing in the current lame-duck session of Congress.