EPA Indefinitely Suspends Enforcement of Environmental Laws

Mar 27, 2020

In the United States, the Environmental Protection Agency on Thursday announced a sweeping and indefinite suspension of environmental rules, telling companies they will effectively be allowed to regulate themselves during the coronavirus pandemic. Under the new rules, big polluters will no longer be punished for failing to comply with reporting rules and other requirements.

Cynthia Giles, the EPA’s former head of enforcement under President Obama, told The Hill newspaper the move “tells companies across the country that they will not face enforcement even if they emit unlawful air and water pollution in violation of environmental laws, so long as they claim that those failures are in some way ’caused’ by the virus pandemic. And it allows them an out on monitoring too, so we may never know how bad the violating pollution was.”

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