New Posts

Feb 8, 2016

Top 400 Taxpayers See Tax Rates Rise, But There’s More to the Story

As Americans were gathering party supplies to greet the New Year, the Internal Revenue Service released their annual report of cumulative tax data reported on the 400 tax r...

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Feb 4, 2016

Chlorine Bleach Plants Needlessly Endanger 63 Million Americans

Chlorine bleach plants across the U.S. put millions of Americans in danger of a chlorine gas release, a substance so toxic it has been used as a chemical weapon. Greenpeace’s new repo...

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Jan 25, 2016

U.S. Industrial Facilities Reported Fewer Toxic Releases in 2014

The Toxics Release Inventory (TRI) data for 2014 is now available. The good news: total toxic releases by reporting facilities decreased by nearly six percent from 2013 levels. Howe...

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Jan 22, 2016

Methane Causes Climate Change. Here's How the President Plans to Cut Emissions by 40-45 Percent.

  UPDATE (Jan. 22, 2016): Today, the Bureau of Land Management (BLM) released its proposed rule to reduce methane emissions...

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Why "Obamacare" Supporters Need to Care about the Health of the Regulatory System

By now, you’ve almost certainly heard about the U.S. Supreme Court’s landmark decision in “the health care case” (National Federation of Independent Businesses v. Sebelius).  In short, the majority ruled that the mandate is a legitimate exercise of Congress’s power to tax and that financial incentives can be used to encourage states to expand Medicaid eligibility.

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International Regulatory Cooperation: Will Harmonization Protect the Public or Prioritize Corporate Profits?

A May 1 Executive Order on international regulatory cooperation has raised questions about how regulatory agencies set their priorities. Regulatory cooperation is neither a particularly new idea, nor an inherently bad one – but if not handled carefully, it could undercut the public protections on which Americans depend.

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On Workers' Memorial Day, Let's Remember that Regulatory Delay Can Be Deadly

 At long last, a committee on Capitol Hill held a hearing to showcase how important health and safety standards are in protecting the lives of all Americans. On April 19, Sen. Tom Harkin (D-IA), Chair of the U.S. Senate Health, Education, Labor and Pensions Committee, convened the hearing to highlight the devastating impact of regulatory delay on the lives of workers and their families. Driving the point home, relatives of workers who died on the job packed the hearing room, holding pictures of their late loved ones for all to see.

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Doing Little, Changing Everything: EPA's Carbon Pollution Standard for New Power Plants

Nearly five years after the U.S. Supreme Court directed the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to determine whether carbon dioxide should be regulated as a "pollutant" under the Clean Air Act, the agency finally issued a proposed standard for carbon emissions from newly constructed power plants.

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Time to Take Regulations Seriously: How Legislative Sleight-of-Hand is Being Used to Undermine Public Protections

When the 112th Congress convened, it agreed to a rule that, barring emergencies, no bill would be voted on until its text had been publicly available for three days. Recently, however, anti-regulatory legislators have become adept at using amendments and seemingly innocuous provisions to attempt to undercut long-standing safeguards without providing sufficient time for debate and discussion of the implications of their actions. These tactics threaten public protections and the legislative process itself.

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EPA Scientific Integrity Proposal Missing Critical Elements

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) draft scientific integrity policy is missing critical elements needed to effectively safeguard science at the agency, OMB Watch said in comments filed yesterday. The policy must be improved if the agency is to ensure that the best science informs policy decisions that affect the health and environmental quality of all Americans.

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How to Strengthen Transparency in the U.S. Open Government Plan

Yesterday, OMB Watch submitted its recommendations for the Obama administration's national plan for the Open Government Partnership (OGP). The administration will unveil its plan, with new concrete commitments to increase transparency, at the international OGP meeting on Sept. 20.

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NOAA Takes Lead on Protecting Scientific Integrity

The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration's (NOAA) efforts to protect scientific integrity make the agency a leader among its federal counterparts, OMB Watch said in comments filed last week.

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Administration Fumbling Toward Scientific Integrity

The Obama administration's efforts to protect scientific integrity moved forward recently with the submission of five finalized agency policies and 14 draft policies, but progress has been slow and haphazard. The administration recognizes that sound, uncensored science is critically important to protecting public health and the environment. The administration also understands that agencies should foster a culture of scientific integrity that includes effective policies and oversight to protect science from political manipulation and research misconduct. However, it has yet to undo the damage wrought by the previous administration.

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EPA Delays Life-Saving Rule, Cites White House Order

In response to pressure from industry, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) is backing off of new clean air standards for industrial boilers. The standards, as finalized in February, would prevent “2,600 premature deaths, 4,100 heart attacks, and 42,000 asthma attacks” if implemented, according to EPA.

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Resources & Research

Living in the Shadow of Danger: Poverty, Race, and Unequal Chemical Facility Hazards

People of color and people living in poverty, especially poor children of color, are significantly more likely...

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A Tale of Two Retirements: One for CEOs and One for the Rest of Us

The 100 largest CEO retirement funds are worth a combined $4.9 billion, equal to the entire retirement account savings of 41 percent of American fam...

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