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“Industry Lawyers Resist Relying on Trump Environmental Rollbacks”

“Power industry lawyers are in regulatory limbo as the Trump administration nears its four-year mark, unable to rely on several tailor-made rollbacks amid potential policy shifts.

Federal agencies’ recent rewrites of regulations for environmental reviews, water jurisdiction, and coal ash are too vulnerable to legal and political winds to steer business decision-making, attorneys said Wednesday during an American Bar Association conference.

Tennessee Valley Authority lawyer Steven Johnson pointed to recent wastewater and coal ash rules from the Environmental Protection Agency. TVA has to make related operational decisions quickly, “but it is difficult with looming uncertainty,” Johnson said.

Lawmakers could reverse both rules under the Congressional Review Act if Democrats control both chambers, or the rules could be sidelined by courts or a future Democratic administration, should former Vice President Joe Biden win the election.”

Ellen M. Gilmer reports for Bloomberg Environment October 21, 2020.