EPA proposal would shrink buffer zones around farm pesticides

In the name of making safety regulations easier to implement, the EPA proposed on Thursday to reduce the size of buffer zones intended to protect people from exposure to pesticides during their application on the farm. Environmental and farmworker groups said the proposal would increase the risk of pesticides being sprayed on or drifting onto workers, neighbors, and passersby.

Forest Service to scale back environmental reviews

In the name of greater efficiency, the U.S. Forest Service said on Wednesday that it would modernize its procedures for complying with the National Environmental Policy Act, the bedrock federal environmental protection law.

EPA delays Obama’s WOTUS rule until 2020 while it writes its own version

President Trump set out to erase the Obama-era Waters of the United States rule in his first weeks in office. Now the EPA has finalized an action that should keep the so-called WOTUS rule from ever taking effect.

Pruitt promises no more than a six-month wait for new permits

The EPA will soon cut the wait time for permit requests to six months or less, in an effort to trim regulations generally for industry, says Reuters.

Trump nominates climate-change denier as top White House environmental adviser

President Trump has nominated Kathleen Hartnett White, a current senior policy adviser at the free-market think tank Texas Public Policy Foundation, to serve as the White House’s senior environmental policy adviser. Hartnett has argued that calling carbon dioxide a pollutant is “absurd,” and that C02 should instead be considered the gas of life.

EPA pulls agents from investigating enviro crime to guard Pruitt

In order to provide around-the-clock security for EPA administrator Scott Pruitt, the agency “has summoned agents from various cities to serve two-week stints helping guard Pruitt,” says the Washington Post. “The practice has rankled some employees and outside critics, who note that the EPA’s criminal enforcement efforts already are understaffed and that the Trump administration has proposed further cuts to the division.”

Pruitt’s EPA accused of secret phone calls and armed guards

As he works to reverse many of the environmental regulations set under the Obama administration, EPA chief Scott Pruitt has dialed up both security and secrecy at the agency.