EPA

Courtesy of Indiana University

Indiana University’s Janet McCabe will officially become the deputy administrator of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. The U.S. Senate confirmed her appointment to the second highest position at the agency on Tuesday by a vote of 52-42.

Samantha Horton / IPB News

The Environmental Protection Agency is facing a lawsuit for not setting limits for certain hazardous air pollutants at steel mills — like mercury and the cancer-causing chemical benzene.

Rebecca Thiele / IPB News

Indianapolis Power and Light has agreed to pay more than $1.5 million for alleged air pollution violations at its Petersburg coal plant. That's according to a consent decree filed on Monday between the utility, the state, and the Environmental Protection Agency. 

Mike Mozart / Flickr

Is my drinking water safe? How can I find out what polluted sites are in my neighborhood? Several of our audience members wanted to know the answer to these questions and more.

EPA Doesn't Plan To Tighten Standards For Smog

Jul 15, 2020
Marco Verch / Flickr

The Environmental Protection Agency plans to pass on another opportunity to tighten air pollution standards. In April, the agency proposed not changing the standards for particle pollution. It announced on Monday it also doesn’t plan to tighten the standards for ozone — commonly known as smog.

Ken Lund / Flickr

The Environmental Protection Agency plans to end its policy relaxing penalties for some violations during the pandemic. In an EPA memo, the agency said as states reopen, they're reducing the restrictions that make it difficult for industrial companies to comply with environmental laws. 

FILE PHOTO: Jeanie Lindsay / IPB News

It’s safe to say there have been other things on Hoosiers’ minds than the environment these days. The COVID-19 pandemic has not only affected the health of Indiana residents, but also jobs and local economies. Meanwhile, people across the country are protesting acts of violence by police officers against black men and women. 

Tyler Lake / WFIU/WTIU

The number of industrial facilities reporting water pollution violations in the Midwest has spiked since 2017. A new report shows it could be due to a decline in enforcement at the Environmental Protection Agency. 

Aristocrats-Hat / Flickr

Industrial companies and others likely won’t be penalized for failing to comply with certain pollution control laws due to the coronavirus outbreak. That’s according to an Environmental Protection Agency announcement last week. 

Contractors working for the Environmental Protection Agency removed about 3,600 cubic yards of lead and arsenic contaminated soil from the old Carrie Gosch Elementary school property in East Chicago, Indiana. But residents say the EPA moved forward with the cleanup without addressing their concerns. 

Terre Haute Meets Air Quality Standard For Sulfur Dioxide

Jul 3, 2019

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency announced Monday Terre Haute and the rest of Vigo County now meets the National Ambient Air Quality Standard for sulfur dioxide.

This follows Duke Energy closing its Wabash River coal plant, near West Terre Haute.

The Environmental Protection Agency’s residential soil clean up at East Chicago’s Superfund site may wrap up this year. This is the end of one of many phases in the federal agency’s cleanup plan.

5 governors oppose Trump plan to cut Great Lakes spending

Mar 14, 2019

LANSING, Mich. (AP) — Governors of five states oppose President Donald Trump's call for a 90 percent spending cut for a Great Lakes cleanup program.

The president's 2020 budget offers $30 million for the Great Lakes Restoration Initiative, which gets $300 million most years. It removes toxic pollution, prevents algae blooms and species invasions, and restores wildlife habitat.

The governors said Wednesday the cut would cost jobs, hurt tourism and jeopardize public health. They urged Trump and Vice President Mike Pence, a former Indiana governor, to fully fund the program.

Midwest environmental groups are threatening to sue the Environmental Protection Agency for delaying action on polluted rivers and streams in Indiana.

The Environmental Law & Policy Center, the Alliance for the Great Lakes, and the Hoosier Environmental Council sent a letter Wednesday giving the EPA 60 days notice of their lawsuit. 

EPA plans soil removal at lead-tainted Indiana complex

Nov 12, 2018

EAST CHICAGO, Ind. (AP) — The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency is moving ahead with plans for a 2-foot-deep removal of lead- and arsenic-contaminated soil at the site of a northwestern Indiana public housing that's been evacuated and demolished over health concerns.

EPA cites factory for toxic lead in Indiana

Nov 9, 2018

WHITING, Ind. (AP) — Federal and state environmental officials say a northwestern Indiana factory has repeatedly violated federal health standards by releasing alarmingly high concentrations of airborne lead in two cities.

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency and the Indiana Department of Environmental Management accused Whiting Metals of the violations Thursday, based on three months of air quality testing in Hammond and Whiting.

Conservation Groups Petition EPA Over Biofuels Law

Oct 31, 2018

Conservation groups say the U.S. is illegally destroying wildlife habitat to produce biofuels. That has big implications for Indiana, where about 40 percent of our corn is grown for ethanol. The groups say the Environmental Protection Agency isn't enforcing a 2007 law. 

EPA turns to judge for lead-testing at 9 NW Indiana homes

Oct 29, 2018

EAST CHICAGO, Ind. (AP) — The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency is seeking access to nine properties within a Superfund site in northwestern Indiana that have never been tested for lead or arsenic contamination.

The EPA says in court filings that the East Chicago properties may be tainted with lead or arsenic at levels that may pose a threat to human health and the environment. The agency says it hasn't been able to get permission from property owners to test the soil.

Peter Fitzgerald / Wikipedia

GARY, Ind. (AP) — The city of Gary is getting a $46,000 federal loan to move along its plans to turn a ruined church into a tourist attraction.

The loan through the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency will be used for asbestos abatement on the dilapidated City Methodist Church.

The Times reports that the Gothic-style church dating to the 1920s closed in 1975 after years of declining membership.

(U.S. EPA)
Lauren Chapman

The region of the Environmental Protection Agency that includes Indiana has lost more than 100 employees since President Donald Trump’s election. A union that represents EPA Region 5 says that means there are fewer watchdogs in the Midwest. 

Ethanol Groups Sue EPA Over Oil Refinery Waivers

May 31, 2018

Pro-ethanol groups are suing the Environmental Protection Agency for granting Renewable Fuel Standard exemptions to three oil refineries — which means those refineries don’t have to add the required amount of ethanol to their gas. 

The Environmental Protection Agency recently declared a Superfund site in Spencer because of contaminated groundwater. But town officials say the water is safe to drink.

The Franklin Street Groundwater site is contaminated with PCE — a chemical the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency says likely causes cancer. It’s used in dry cleaning or to get grease off metal. The EPA put the Franklin Street site on its priority list last week.

The Environmental Protection Agency visited East Chicago, Indiana, Saturday, to update residents on contamination cleanup.

EPA Region 5 Administrator Cathy Stepp and U.S. EPA senior advisor Albert Kelly attended the briefing and listened to public comment.

Residents heard updates from the on-site remediation coordinators and participated in, sometimes heated, Q&A sessions. Those comments were heard loud and clear, says Kelly.

Rep. Carey Hamilton (D-Indianapolis) calls on Indiana delegates to oppose budget cuts to the EPA. (Jill Sheridan/IPB News)
Lauren Chapman

  

Community leaders gathered at the Statehouse Tuesday to speak out against proposed federal cuts to environmental protection programs. They focused on concerns for public health. President Donald Trump's proposed budget would cut Environmental Protection Agency funding by about 23 percent. 

Community leaders called on Indiana's Congressional representatives to oppose the cuts ahead of the approval deadline.

NASA

In 2017, President Trump proposed cutting $300 million for Great Lakes projects. That money stayed in the federal budget, but as a new year begins, environmental advocates have lots of concerns – including cuts to the EPA. 

Groups throughout the region plan to take the fate of the Great Lakes into their own hands in 2018.

This means working with communities on climate change and collaborating to clean up polluted waters.

The cleanup for part of an East Chicago, Indiana toxic waste site will cost nearly four times more than originally expected. The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, which oversees the site’s cleanup, will open an opportunity for public comments Monday, Dec. 18.

The EPA initially estimated cleanup for the residential area of the USS Lead Superfund site would cost $23 million. But, a new agency report says the estimate should be closer to $85 million.

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency will accelerate cleanup of 21 toxic waste sites across the country, including a lead- and arsenic-contaminated site in East Chicago, Indiana.

The EPA wants to expedite soil cleanup and finalize a plan for what to do with a now-abandoned public housing complex after it’s demolished at the USS Lead site in the northwest Indiana city.

Attorney David Chizewer says it’s not immediately clear if that’s helpful.

Farmers Seek Delay For Hazardous Air Emission Rule

Nov 14, 2017

Chicken and hog farmers want a federal court to delay a rule that would require they report certain hazardous air emissions from manure pits, but Hoosier farmers aren’t sure how they’d comply with the rule if it goes into effect.

A federal court ruled last April farms were not exempt from a 2008 Environmental Protection Agency rule regulating hazardous air emissions. The ruling takes effect Nov. 15, but Indiana Pork Producers executive director Josh Trenary says the EPA and ag industry groups want a delay.

Indiana has begun planning how to use its $40.9 million portion of the Volkswagen pollution settlement.

The Indiana Department of Environmental Management, or IDEM, wants public input on a plan to pay to upgrade diesel equipment in places with severe emissions.

VW admitted last year to tampering with emissions equipment in 600,000 of its cars sold in the U.S. The company’s $2.7 billion Clean Air Act settlement includes money for states to offset pollution from the altered cars.

EPA Moves To Repeal Clean Power Plan

Oct 9, 2017

Environmental Protection Agency chief Scott Pruitt announced Monday the Trump administration will repeal the Clean Power Plan.

The Clean Power Plan would reduce carbon emissions from power plants by 30 percent nationwide in an effort to slow man-made climate change.

Indiana and 27 other states previously sued the EPA over the Obama-era rule.

The U.S. Supreme Court blocked the rule from going into effect in 2016, a move that met the approval of industry groups such as the Indiana Coal Council.

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