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GOP Appropriators continue war on EPA budget

06 Jul 2011  |   Emma Brown

Tags: Congress, House

Key Republican appropriators unveiled a proposal Wednesday for the 2012 Interior and Environment Appropriations bill with an emphasis on drastically reducing the EPA budget. 

The spending bill, which currently resides in subcommittee, slashes $1.8 billion from the White House’s requested levels for the EPA. The measure includes cuts to wastewater and drinking water infrastructure funding, grants for state environmental programs, and cleanup programs for the Great Lakes and Chesapeake Bay.

Among other anti-environmental provisions, the bill also includes a series of riders designed to curb the EPA’s ability to regulate clean air, water and environmental safety policies. 

Some of the most disturbing riders included in the proposal were:

  • Language prohibiting the EPA from implementing standards to protect streams from mountaintop removal coal sites.
  • A measure to prevent the EPA from extending the authority to protect waterways under the Clean Water act to all “navigable waterways.”
  • A provision prohibiting the EPA from regulating greenhouse gas emissions for one year.
  • Language banning the EPA from delegating funds towards defining toxic coal ash as “hazardous waste.”
  • A provision to expedite offshore drilling while limiting the EPA’s ability to monitor air pollution in the Outer Continental Shelf.

The measure is expected to be voted on by the subcommittee on Thursday.

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