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Obama vows to protect conservation, public health, and environmental efforts, threatens to veto H.R. 2584

26 Jul 2011  |   Emma Brown

Tags: Congress, Administration

The Obama administration vowed Thursday to protect the nation from one of the biggest efforts to undermine conservation, public health and environmental efforts in recent history and threatened to veto H.R. 2584 should it pass Congress. 

H.R. 2584—the FY 2012 Appropriations Bill for the Department of the Interior, Environment, and related agencies—includes “ideological and political provisions that are beyond the scope of funding legislation,” a Statement of Administration Policy said. “If the President is presented with a bill that undermines ongoing conservation, public health, and environmental protection effort through funding limits or restrictions, his senior advisors would recommend he veto the bill.” 

A few of the most dangerous provisions out of the massive number of ideological-driven assaults on public health and the environment in the bill include:

  • A drastic reduction in the EPA Operating Budget. The administration stressed that “At the funding level provided, the EPA will be unable to implement its core mission of protecting human health and the environment.”
  • Unsustainable levels of funding for wildland fire suppression efforts.
  • Severe cuts to EPA Greenhouse Gas programs, the Great Lakes Restoration Initiative, funding for the Chesapeake Bay cleanup project, and the widely popular SmartGrowth program, eliminating funding support beyond manageable levels.
  • Several provisions designed to undermine government oversight and regulation of mountain top coal mining.
  • The elimination of funding for over 400 wastewater and drinking water infrastructure projects.
  • A reversal of key protections for gray wolves, an endangered species.
  • Language that strips the EPA of its authority under the Clean Air Act to regulate harmful Greenhouse Gas Emissions and prohibits the agency from implementing current and future air toxins rules.
  • A measure that prohibits the Administration from providing clarification on and reinstating the effectiveness of the Clean Water Act.
  • Delays implementation of EPA rules designed to protect sensitive populations such as children from lead exposure.
  • Language that bans the EPA from considering human health and environmental impacts in its decision to grant Outer Continental Shelf Drilling permits.

The House is expected to bring the bill to the floor Monday.

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