Regs Talk: The CSS Blog

Blogs are authored by CSS affiliated policy experts and have been reprinted with permission. If you would like us to share your blog entry with our readers, please email David Rosen at [email protected]. To find older blogs, please use our site’s search engine.

Blogs by Topic

 


 

Lead Contaminated Water: EPA’s Proposal Fails Our Kids

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By Erik D. Olson and Valerie Baron, Natural Resources Defense Council We have learned from the ongoing lead in water crises in Flint, Michigan; Newark, New Jersey; and Washington, DC, for example, that no community and no child is exempt from the threat of lead-tainted water....
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Blowing the Cover Off the “Cleanest Air” Sparkle of the Trump Administration

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By Julie McNamara, Union of Concerned Scientists First, a fact: People want clean air. And who can blame them—in the United States more than 100,000 people still die from air pollution each year. Notably, the Trump administration is right there with them, repeatedly claiming to...
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Are Your Children Vaping? On Vaping and a Need for Science-Based Policy

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By Jacob Carter, Union of Concerned Scientists Teens and young adults across the country are dying from vaping. Yet, the Trump administration has chosen not to take the appropriate steps to fix this pandemic. First planning a sweeping ban on all flavored vape products across the...
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“Navigable Water Protection Rule” Guarantees Widespread Pollution of Our Nation’s Waters

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By Kelly Foster, Waterkeeper Alliance Reversing more than 40 years of progress and settled law, on January 23, 2020, the Environmental Protection Agency and the Army Corps announced a new regulation that removes clean water protections against discharges of pollution into rivers,...
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Court Rebukes EPA’s Ban on Independent Science Advisors

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By Michael Halpern, Union of Concerned Scientists A court this week found serious flaws in the EPA’s exclusion from its advisory committees of academic and non-profit scientists holding grants from the agency. After permitting these eminent scientists to serve (for free!) for...
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The Trump Administration’s Disappointing Efforts to Prevent Lead Poisoning in Children

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By Anita Desikan, Union of Concerned Scientists One of the longest running epidemics in the history of the US is the poisoning of our children with lead. But, as we discuss in our new report on children’s health, the Trump administration is failing to enact or enforce...
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Trump’s NLRB Earns an ‘F’ for Proposing to Take Away Graduate Student Workers’ Rights

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By Anastasia Christman, National Employment Law Project Last fall, the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB or “the Board”) published a notice that sounds a lot like a logic test from school: it intended to make a new rule that students on private college or university campus...
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One Year Into Trump’s PFAS Action Plan, Few Signs of Progress

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By Scott Faber, Environmental Working Group Friday marks one year since the Environmental Protection Agency unveiled its latest plan to address the crisis of the toxic fluorinated chemicals known as PFAS, which have likely contaminated a majority of drinking water supplies...
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A DOE Budget for a Dirty Energy Future

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By Arjun Krishnaswami, Natural Resources Defense Council President Trump has once again proposed to slash the budget for clean energy innovation at the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE), eliminate several highly successful programs, and cancel funds that Congress gave the agency in...
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Ask a Scientist: How Trump Administration Policies Harm Children

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By Elliott Negin, Union of Concerned Scientists At the March for Life rally in Washington a few weeks ago, President Trump declared that “unborn children have never had a stronger defender in the White House.” Defender? In fact, a number of his administration’s anti-environmental...
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Clean Air vs. Dirty Interference

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By Vijay Limaye, Natural Resources Defense Council The Trump administration continues its assault on clean air this week, by convening a group of handpicked advisers in a sham review process. It’s another sad chapter in this administration’s corrupt partnership with corporate...
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An Attack on Common Sense: Don’t Let the Trump Administration Kneecap NEPA!

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By Christopher Williams, American Rivers When Trump administration Interior Secretary David Bernhardt, a former oil and gas industry lobbyist, celebrates a proposed regulation as “really, really big…affect[ing] virtually every single decision by the federal government that...
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The Trump Administration’s Attacks on Science Are Putting Kids in Harm’s Way

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By Genna Reed, Union of Concerned Scientists The Trump administration has abandoned our nation’s mission of protecting kids based on the best evidence. From unsafe strollers to harmful chemicals, the Union of Concerned Scientists illustrates the harms, figuratively and literally,...
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An Analysis of OHV Recalls: Increasing Number of OHVs Pulled From Market Due to Safety Concerns

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By Rachel Weintraub, Consumer Federation of America A Consumer Federation of America (CFA) analysis of off highway vehicle (OHV) recalls found that over the past 10 years, there have been 110 OHV recalls, and the number of recalls has increased from two recalls in 2010 to 17...
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Asbestos, Ubiquitous and Avoidable, Is a Deadly Threat to Our Kids

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By Derrick Z. Jackson, Union of Concerned Scientists In the United States, gun violence kills nearly 40,000 people a year and has killed nearly 40,000 or so children and teenagers since 1999, and yet the nation is still without serious gun control. Another 40,000 people die each...
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International Examples Offer U.S. a Blueprint for Aquaculture Regulation in 2020

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By Hallie Templeton, Friends of the Earth For many years, powerful corporations, assisted by the very U.S. agencies tasked with protecting and managing our ocean resources, have collectively been pushing for development of industrialized fish farms off the coasts of our shoreline...
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New Trump Rules Are a Sneak Attack on Medicaid

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By Lee Goldberg, AFL-CIO There are the things politicians say, and then there are things they do. When Donald Trump was running for office, he promised there would be no cuts to Medicaid. As president, he promised “health care for everyone.” His aides promised “no one will lose...
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Narrow Definition of Waters Covered Under the Clean Water Act Puts All Our Waters at Risk

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By Ellen Simon, Waterkeeper Alliance The Trump administration’s new unscientific, illegal, narrowed definition of waterways protected by the Clean Water Act is a threat to waterways throughout the United States. The definition excludes ephemeral streams, which flow only briefly...
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Trump Administration Officially Invites Polluters Into Bears Ears and Grand Staircase-Escalante National Monuments

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By the Natural Resources Defense Council In another grotesque attack against our public lands, the Bureau of Land Management (BLM) today finalized plans to allow drilling and other extractive activities in previously protected areas of Utah’s Bears Ears and Grand...
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The EPA’s New Shameful Tactic: Avoid People Poisoned by Coal Ash

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By Anita Desikan, Union of Concerned Scientists Imagine you live next to a coal-fired power plant. Near the power plant, you may have seen heavy machinery dumping loads of greyish substance into an open pit or a pond. You learn that the greyish stuff is called coal ash, a...
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We’re Learning More About the Health Harms of Air Pollution

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By Kim Knowlton and Vijay Limaye, Natural Resources Defense Council Inhaling polluted air causes physical and mental harms. We all know that air pollution hurts our lungs, but a new review of the science highlights evidence of more far reaching effects—including on our mental...
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In the Fight to Clean Up Coal Ash, These States Are Making Progress

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By Emilie Karrick Surrusco, Earthjustice When coal is burned to produce electricity, a toxic waste known as coal ash is left behind.  Filled with chemicals such as arsenic, radium, and other carcinogens, coal ash poisons our water, sickens our bodies, and kills fish and wildlife....
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The Deregulatory Dictionary: Defining Anti-Regulatory Buzzwords Used by the Right

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By David Rosen and Matt Kent, Public Citizen With President Donald Trump’s war on regulation kicking into high gear, corrupt administration officials, anti-regulatory ideologues and industry lobbyists are eager to hide what they’re up to and how it will harm the public. Often,...
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Gina McCarthy to Congress: We Must Act Boldly on Climate to Protect Public Health

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By Gina McCarthy, Natural Resources Defense Council Today I’m testifying in front of the House Select Committee on the Climate Crisis to make clear that the biggest public health threat we face today is climate change. And here’s what I plan to make clear: The longer we wait to...
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House Oversight Shines Light on EPA’s Use of ‘Mercury Math’ to Justify Dangerous Rollback That Hurts Kids

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By James Goodwin, Center for Progressive Reform On Thursday, the House Oversight and Reform Committee’s Environment Subcommittee will hold a hearing to examine the harm to children posed by the Trump administration’s attack on one of the most wildly successful clean...
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Raw Sewage and Forever Chemicals: The Trump Administration’s Growing Waterworld Debacle

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By Derrick Z. Jackson, Union of Concerned Scientists The evidence is already spewing in about how foul our water will be under the Trump administration’s new water rules. In late January, Environmental Protection Agency Administrator Andrew Wheeler officially removed protection...
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Wrecking the BLM From Within

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By Vince Bielski, Sierra Club William Perry Pendley, the self-proclaimed “Sagebrush Rebel” from Wyoming who’s shaking up the Bureau of Land Management, may be headed for reappointment without any public scrutiny. The dustup over Pendley began in July, 2019, when he became acting...
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Jacobs Is Unfit to Lead NOAA

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By Gretchen Goldman, Union of Concerned Scientists Late Friday, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) released a batch of emails between high-level agency officials around Sharpiegate; BuzzFeed broke the news. Most of the emails are further verification of...
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EPA Finds Neonics Are Risky Business — But Plans to Approve Anyway

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By Lucas Rhoads, Natural Resources Defense Council After a lengthy and long-delayed review of neonicotinoid insecticides, or neonics, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency released its findings this week, acknowledging that it had previously underestimated the serious risks...
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The Proof Is in the Pudding: Wading Into Fossil Fuel Company Reports

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By Nicole Pinko, Union of Concerned Scientists Every February through May, I sequester myself away to read company reports from major fossil fuel companies. It usually gets off to an exciting start in early February when ExxonMobil and Chevron relea...
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Trump Continues Pushing for Needless Bird Deaths

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By Katie Umekubo, Natural Resources Defense Council The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service to propose a rule embracing Trump administration rollbacks of the Migratory Bird Treaty Act’s essential protections for birds. Flock of American Coot/U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service The Trump...
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Opposing Industry-Cost-Only Analysis as a Trojan Horse to Kill Critical Rules

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By Better Markets Cost-benefit analysis (CBA) sounds good and neutral.  After all, who could oppose only doing something when the benefits outweigh the costs?  The fatal flaws in a cost-benefit framework only appear when the assumptions underlying the analysis are identified: ...
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A New Trump Administration Plan Threatens the Health of Millions of Medicaid Recipients

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By Dorianne Mason, National Women’s Law Center A new Trump Administration plan to convert Medicaid funding into limited block grants threatens the health of millions of Medicaid recipients. Medicaid is a vital source of health coverage for millions of low-incom...
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The Shocking Attack on Bank Supervision by the Fed’s Vice Chair for Supervision

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By Better Markets The Federal Reserve failed miserably in the years before the 2008 crash.  The facts are pretty clear that the crash could have been largely avoided, or at least substantially reduced in severity, if the Fed had even done a modest job in monetary policy,...
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Trump Targets the Heart of U.S. Environmental Law

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By Jonathan Hahn, Sierra Club In 2017, in the kind of ruling that may not happen in the future, the US Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia found that the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) had improperly downplayed the enormous climate impacts of the $3.5...
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Goldman’s 20-Year RAP Sheet of Illegal Behavior Reviewed as it Reveals its Plans for Targeting Main Street

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By Better Markets Goldman Sachs is holding its very first investor meeting in New York today where it is expected to disclose its business plans for targeting Main Street consumers and investors in the coming years.  We thought this was an appropriate time to detail Goldman’s...
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The Bully in the Lunchroom: The U.S. Moves to Weaken Mexico’s New Junk Food Labeling Law

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By Sharon Anglin Treat, Institute for Agriculture & Trade Policy I suppose you have to give the junk food industry credit for persistence. The industry’s proposed junk food provisions in the New NAFTA, known in the United States as the U.S.-Mexico-Canada Agreement, went down...
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Stopping Crooks From Keeping the Money They Rip Off From Investors

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By Better Markets One of the most basic principles of law is that – not matter what else –– a crook should and must give up the money he or she took from the unsuspecting victims, often called “ill-gotten gains.”  That is the legal concept of “disgorgement” and it is...
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Trump’s Dirty Water Rule: EPA Ignorance Is Polluters’ Bliss

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By Jon Devine, Natural Resources Defense Council On January 23, the Environmental Protection Agency and the Army Corps of Engineers unveiled a regulation that dramatically restricts what kinds of water bodies the Clean Water Act protects. The rule excludes rain-dependent streams...
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In 2021, Let’s Set the Bar Higher for Our Government

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By Genna Reed, Union of Concerned Scientists A new Union of Concerned Scientists report released today provides recommendations for the next administration on how to restore science in policymaking. One element of ensuring independent science informs decisions is blocking...
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Half of CFPB Complaints in 2019 About Credit Reports as House Brings Reforms to the Floor

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By Ed Mierzwinski, U.S. PIRG On Wednesday, 29 January, the full U.S. House is expected to vote on a broad credit reporting reform package, HR3621, the Comprehensive CREDIT Act. Meanwhile, a PIRG analysis finds that half of all complaints reported into the CFPB’s Public...
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How Environmental Justice Became a Matter of Governance

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By Anita Desikan, Union of Concerned Scientists “All my life I’ve been sick and tired. Now I’m sick and tired of being sick and tired.” One of the leaders of the civil rights movement, Fannie Lou Hamer, famously said these words during the 1964 Democratic National Convention to...
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America’s Wetlands: Vital, Ignored and Now Defined Away by the Trump Administration

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By Genna Reed, Union of Concerned Scientists Last week, the Trump administration finalized its rollback of the expanded definition of the waters of the United States. Now fewer water bodies, including wetlands and ephemeral streams, will be protected under the Clean Water Act....
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Undermining a Fundamental Law

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By Larissa Liebmann, Waterkeeper Alliance Since 1970 the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) has been a vital tool for the public to ensure that decisions made by federal agencies that impact the environment are made in a transparent, well-informed manner. NEPA requires...
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Five Quotes Capturing the Debate Over Dietary Guidelines

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By Sarah Reinhardt, Union of Concerned Scientists Last week in Houston, a federal advisory committee convened for the fourth time to deliberate the science that will shape the 2020-2025 Dietary Guidelines for Americans. Revised every five years to reflect current science, these...
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The CFPB’s Disappointing Abusiveness Policy Statement

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By Jeff Sovern, St. John’s University School of Law On Friday, the CFPB issued a Policy Statement on Abusive Acts or Practices. The Policy Statement is disappointing in several respects. First, it is intended to address a problem that has never been shown to exist. The...
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With Trump’s NEPA Rollback, It’s Conservatives Against Conservatives

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By James Goodwin, Center for Progressive Reform When the Trump administration released its recent proposal to gut the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA), it trumpeted the action as a long-overdue step to “modernize” the law’s implementation by...
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The Trump Administration’s New Housing Rules Will Worsen Segregation

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By Richard Rothstein, Economic Policy Institute In “The Neighborhoods We Will Not Share,” an article published online at The New York Times, I describe how the Trump administration has proposed a rule that will make it virtually impossible to challenge many policies that...
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EPA’s New Water Rule a Mockery of Science and the Clean Water Act

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By Derrick Z. Jackson, Union of Concerned Scientists With the Environmental Protection Agency’s own data showing that nearly half of our rivers and streams and a third of our wetlands are in “poor biological condition,” and with millions of Americans exposed ...
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Trump Cars Rollback Is a Dangerous Mess

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By Luke Tonachel, Natural Resources Defense Council When the Trump administration proposed its ridiculous rollback of clean car standards in 2018, it pretended that the increased costs for drivers at the pump, the loss of jobs and devastating pollution impacts were worth it...
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Trump Administration Moves to Finalize Extremely Dumb Fuel Economy and Vehicle Emissions Rule

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By Dave Cooke, Union of Concerned Scientists A little over a year ago, EPA and NHTSA proposed rolling back fuel economy and vehicle emissions standards based on deeply flawed analysis. Earlier this month, EPA and NHTSA finally got around to “fixing” the plethora of errors and...
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Automakers Must Stand Up for Clean Cars

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By Luke Tonachel, Natural Resources Defense Council Several of the biggest names in automobiles are siding with the Trump administration in efforts to roll back clean car standards and strip states of their authority to set standards needed to protect public health. NRDC’s...
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Secretary Perdue and the Trump Administration See Environmental Regulation as a Weapon. That’s Not Just Dumb, It’s Dangerous.

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By Karen Perry Stillerman, Union of Concerned Scientists In the latest assault on science and the nation’s health and safety, the Trump administration recently proposed a rule that would upend the way federal agencies work to assess and minimize the harm their actions can do to...
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Trump’s Interior Department Doesn’t Care What You Think

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By Paul Rauber, Sierra Club You always suspected it was true, but here comes the Center for Western Priorities with the receipts. Its analysts looked at proposed rule changes by the Interior Department since 2017 that garnered more than 500 comments and found 10—all rollbacks of...
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EPA Flunks Science 101 With Its Dirty Water Rule

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By Jon Devine, Natural Resources Defense Council The Trump administration’s plan to radically restrict which water bodies are protected by the Clean Water Act is “simplistic.” It “neglects established science,” introduces “substantial new risks to human and environmental health,”...
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Expect Low Carbs and Low Credibility at Next Week’s Dietary Guidelines Meeting

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By Sarah Reinhardt, Union of Concerned Scientists Next week, a committee of top health, medical, and nutrition experts will gather in Houston, Texas to answer an age-old question: What should we eat? This is the fourth of five public meetings the committee will hold as it...
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New DOE Policy Kneecaps Energy Efficiency Standards

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By Lauren Urbanek, Natural Resources Defense Council The U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) just announced it has finalized changes to its energy efficiency standards process that will slow down—if not halt altogether—future efforts to make America’s appliances and equipment more...
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EPA Must Keep Communities Safe From Ethylene Oxide Cancer Risks

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By Genna Reed, Union of Concerned Scientists This morning, I found myself back at EPA headquarters in downtown Washington, DC, asking EPA a second time to do something that should be obvious: listen to its own scientists and use the best available science to protect communities...
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Trump EPA Air Office’s “War on the War on Cancer”

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By Jennifer Sass, Natural Resources Defense Council The Trump EPA is trying to get some cover by holding a comment period and a few public hearings—listening sessions, where members of the public can register for up to five minutes of time to share an opinion or information with...
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Five Ways Trump’s Latest Anti-Environmental Proposal Would Allow Fossil Fuel Companies to Bulldoze Communities

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By Christy Goldfuss, Claire Moser and Sally Hardin, Center for American Progress Last week, the Trump administration released a draft of its proposed changes to the regulations that implement the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA)—the most important law that requires the...
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Brewers Oppose Weakening Coal Plant Water Pollution Limits

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By Becky Hammer, Natural Resources Defense Council Today, 48 craft breweries around the country submitted a letter to the Environmental Protection Agency opposing the agency’s proposal to weaken water pollution safeguards for coal-burning power plants. Power plant...
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William Pendley Should Not Be Acting Administrator of the Bureau of Land Management

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By Andrew Rosenberg, Union of Concerned Scientists Earlier this month, Interior Secretary David Bernhardt extended William Pendley’s appointment  as the Acting Director of the Bureau of Land Management (BLM) for another three months. The BLM has not had a Senate-confirmed...
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Congress Moves Further on PFAS Protections

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By Erik D. Olson and Katie Hobbs, Natural Resources Defense Council Congress has made good on a promise to return to the work they started in last year’s National Defense Authorization Act: tackling the PFAS crisis. On Friday, the House of Representatives voted to pass the PFAS...
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Captured: Financial Regulator at Risk

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By David S. Hilzenrath, Project on Government Oversight When the board that regulates corporate auditors announced the appointment of a top official in 2018, it said her experience made her “an excellent fit for the role.” The role—“chief auditor”—involves setting and...
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What You Should Know About Liquefied Natural Gas and Rail Cars

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By Earthjustice THE EXPLOSION RISK of transporting volatile liquefied natural gas in vulnerable tank cars through major population centers is off the charts. Yet the Trump administration is proposing a rule that would allow trains to travel the country filled with an...
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Study: PFAS Exposure Through Skin Causes Harm Similar to Ingestion

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By Ketura Persellin, Environmental Working Group Exposure through the skin to the toxic fluorinated chemical once used to make Teflon could pose the same health hazards as ingesting the compound in water or food, according to a new animal study from the National Institute for...
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CFPB Appoints Take “Farce” on Consumer Law

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By Ed Mierzwinski, U.S. PIRG Last week, CFPB Director Kathy Kraninger appointed four lawyers and professors to a “Taskforce on Federal Consumer Law.” To my knowledge, none have worked for consumer protection organizations yet all have worked as industry lawyers or...
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Delayed Energy Efficiency Standards Finally Published

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By Lauren Urbanek, Natural Resources Defense Council What does it take to get the Trump administration to support the fastest, cheapest way to cut energy use? Two court rulings! Four long-delayed energy efficiency standards are finally ensconced in law thanks to a 2018 district...
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Profiles in Cowardice: Chemicals, Climate, and a Toxic Disregard by the Trump Administration

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By Kathleen Rest, Union of Concerned Scientists Last month, inspired by John F. Kennedy’s 1956 classic Profiles in Courage, I kicked off a series of blog posts profiling the lack of courage we are too often witnessing in our elected leaders, their appointees, and other important...
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Trump Disregards Citizens in His Rush for Polluting Projects

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Sharon Buccino, Natural Resources Defense Council A half a century ago, members of Congress from both parties and all corners of our nation came together to pass a landmark law that gave citizens a guaranteed say in the projects that will define our nation. More than an...
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Legislation Is Introduced to Stop Manufacturers From Getting a Veto on Consumer Product Safety Alerts

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By Remington A. Gregg, Public Citizen Today, U.S. Rep. Bobby Rush (D-Ill.) introduced the Safety Hazard and Recall Efficiency (SHARE) Information Act. This legislation would repeal a dangerous provision of Section 6(b) of the Consumer Product Safety Act, which gives product...
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OSHA’s Inertia

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By Tom Conway, United Steelworkers Within two months of starting work at an Amazon warehouse in Eastvale, Calif., Candice Dixon ruined her back. Dixon had to bend, lift and strain at a feverish pace to meet Amazon’s demand that she scan and stow one item every 11 seconds. If she...
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It’s Time to End EPA’s Long History of Failing to Act on ‘Forever Chemicals’

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By Scott Faber, Environmental Working Group The Environmental Protection Agency has a long history of failing to act to protect Americans from the toxic fluorinated chemicals known as PFAS, which are linked to an increased risk of cancer and other diseases. In 1998, EPA officials...
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Another Coal Ash Rollback, Another Bogus “Hearing”

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By Becky Hammer, Natural Resources Defense Council Yesterday, I testified at an Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) hearing on its latest proposal to weaken safety standards for facilities where toxic coal ash is stored. But I couldn’t see the EPA officials to whom I was...
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Trump EPA Doing Something to Actually REDUCE Pollution From Trucks

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By Dave Cooke, Union of Concerned Scientists Today, EPA Administrator Andrew Wheeler announced an advanced notice of proposed rulemaking (ANPRM) to set more stringent pollution standards on heavy-duty trucks. This follows up on the 2018 announcement of the administration...
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Profiles in Cowardice: EPA’s Abysmal Failure to Protect Children’s Health

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By Kathleen Rest, Union of Concerned Scientists Last month, having re-read Profiles in Courage by John Fitzgerald Kennedy, I found myself ruminating on the astounding lack of courage demonstrated by many of our elected leaders, their appointees, and other important stakeholders....
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Manufacturers Must Do More to Keep Toxins Out of Our Toys

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By Grace Brombach, U.S. PIRG Parents don’t usually expect the toys they buy to threaten their kid’s health — especially when that toy is a smiling train from a popular kids show. But in 2007, nearly 1.5 million Thomas and Friends trains were recalled from store shelves and...
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EPA Science Advisors Tear Into Agency’s “Transparency” Proposal

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By Michael Halpern, Union of Concerned Scientists The EPA’s own Science Advisory Board (SAB)—two-thirds of which was appointed by the Trump administration—is the latest group of scientists to come out swinging against a proposal to restrict the use of science in agency decisions....
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Top Ten Regulatory Policy Stories to Look Out for in 2020 (IMHO)

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By James Goodwin, Center for Progressive Reform As I noted in my last post, 2019 brought a number of worrisome developments in regulatory policy. There were a few bright spots – most notably the positive attention public servants received for holding the Trump administration...
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10 Worst Rollbacks and Deregulatory Disasters of 2019

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By David Rosen, Public Citizen 2019 has been a rough year for regulation, in no small part because of the escalating war on regulation led by President Donald Trump and congressional Republicans at the behest of private industry. We’ve put together a list of some of the worst...
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Top Ten Regulatory Policy Stories of 2019 (IMHO)

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By James Goodwin, Center for Progressive Reform For many of us, the best way to characterize the past year in three words would be “too much news.” That sentiment certainly applies to the wonky backwater of the regulatory policy world. Today, that world looks much different than...
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Industry Corruption and Fraud in SEC Rulemaking Be Investigated and Prosecuted

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By Better Markets Hard to believe, but the SEC recently proposed a rule to gag independent proxy firms from providing their unbiased opinion to investors who hire them. In fact, the SEC is proposing that proxy firms provide their opinions on corporations to the management of...
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Better Markets Calls Out FDIC for Not Protecting Depositors & Taxpayers

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By Better Markets The Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (FDIC) exists to protect bank depositors and taxpayers, but – shockingly – the new Chairwoman ranks this priority as a “third goal” behind helping finance “innovate” and a new-found “balanced” interpretation of th...
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Lawless SEC Going After ESG & Investors Rather Than Protecting Them

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By Better Markets Ignoring the laws that are supposed to mandate its actions, the SEC has perverted its mission from protecting investors to protecting Corporate America, incumbent management and financial giants. The latest is the attack on ESG (environmental, social and...
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Another Attack on Endangered Species Escalates Need for New Legislation

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By Jacob Carter, Union of Concerned Scientists The Trump administration is no stranger to attacking protections for endangered species, the implementation of the process by which endangered species are afforded protections by the federal government, the science underpinning that...
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Privacy Is a Human Right – It Can’t Be Bought or Sold

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By Susan Grant, Consumer Federation of America One of the arguments that some people make about privacy legislation is that individuals’ personal information should be treated as their property. At first blush, this may seem like an appealing idea. Why shouldn’t we be paid when...
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EPA Tried to Allow Dirtier Trucks Without Studying Whether That Would Be Bad for Health

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By Dave Cooke, Union of Concerned Scientists No, that’s not an Onion headline—a new report from the EPA Office of the Inspector General (OIG) finds that Administrator Scott Pruitt tried to rush through a regulation which would allow the new sale of trucks that lack modern...
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Three Republican-Appointed White Men Are Now Deciding Whether You Have Rights on the Job

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By Lynn Rhinehart and Celine McNicholas, Economic Policy Institute Yesterday marked the end of Democratic National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) Member Lauren McFerran’s term. McFerran ended her term offering the lone dissenting voice in the Trump board’s efforts to slow down...
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FERC’s Move to Defend Competition Actually Hurts Competition

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By Mike Jacobs, Union of Concerned Scientists The FERC  (Federal Energy Regulatory Commission) decision expected Thursday will allow PJM to counteract the intended effects of state energy policies supporting nuclear and renewable energy.  But the decision is expected to allow PJM...
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Webinar Recap: Achieving Social Justice Through Better Regulations

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By James Goodwin, Center for Progressive Reform Last week, my CPR colleagues and I were honored to be joined by dozens of fellow advocates and member of the press for a webinar that explored the recent CPR report, Regulation as Social Justice: A Crowdsourced Blueprint for...
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A Pivotal Year for Clean Water

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By Larissa Liebmann,  Waterkeeper Alliance In 2019 we saw monumental attacks on federal clean water protections. The Trump administration is advancing plans to eliminate Clean Water Act protections from waterways across the nation, trying to carve out a massive loophole for...
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The FDIC Can Protect Taxpayers, Prevent Crashes & Bailouts, AND Promote Innovation

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By Better Markets The Brookings Institution hosted a lively and enlightening discussion on December 11, 2019 focusing on “Brokered Deposits in the Fintech Age.”  That sounds boring, but it’s really important to everyone with a debit card, prepaid card, HSA, etc., or who cares...
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Setting the Stage for Another Trump Shutdown

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By David Rosen, Public Citizen The possibility of another Trump Shutdown is growing, and it’s proof that some people never learn from their mistakes – even extremely painful ones. Government shutdowns happen when Congress and the White House are unable to reach agreement on a set...
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Congress Misses the Mark on PFAS in the NDAA

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By Genna Reed, Union of Concerned Scientists This year’s National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) has turned out to be a missed opportunity for a full-on government effort to do its job of protecting us. While we had high hopes for a strong compromise based on draft language...
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Maine’s Plan to Address “Forever Chemicals” Polluting Farms, Water and Food

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By Sharon Anglin Treat, Institute for Agriculture & Trade Policy In the absence of federal action, state governments are struggling to address widespread Per- and Polyfluoroalkyl Substances (PFAS) contamination of water, soils and food. PFAS are a group of man-made chemicals...
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The Trump Administration Is Poised to Gut Environmental Review. What’s at Stake?

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By Sally Hardin and Claire Moser, Center for American Progress In the coming weeks, the Trump administration is poised to make some major changes to how much—or more likely, how little—environmental review and public input is required for federal projects, including for roads and...
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Courts Matter for Workers

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By Alliance for Justice Retail and service jobs can be brutal on the best days, and the holidays exacerbate the mistreatment of working people. For many people who are just trying to get by, the only options for work are service-based jobs that pay federal minimum wage during the...
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This Year’s Defense Bill Has Important Public Health Protections

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By Erik D. Olson and Katie Hobbs, Natural Resources Defense Council Congress has reached an agreement on the National Defense Authorization Act for FY 2020 (NDAA), after a tense year of negotiation. The final bill will, we believe, deliver substantial public health benefits. It...
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Pesticides, Heat, and the People Who Feed Us: Climate Change Is Making Farmworkers’ Dangerous Job Even Worse

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By Rafter Ferguson, Union of Concerned Scientists In a new report released this week, we show that climate change poses dire threats to farmworkers. While conversations around agriculture and climate change have increasingly focused on the devastating impacts of extreme weather,...
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EPA Science Advisors Fail to Reach Consensus on Particulate Pollution Standards

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By Gretchen Goldman, Union of Concerned Scientists This week I’m at the EPA Clean Air Scientific Advisory Committee (CASAC) meeting in North Carolina and an expected but disappointing outcome has just occurred: The committee has failed to reach consensus recommendations for the...
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