L.A. Times - Environment

The latest news from the Los Angeles Times on science and environmental science.

Longtime Scott Pruitt ally Sen. James Inhofe says it may be time for EPA chief to 'leave that job'

Even Scott Pruitt’s most loyal friends are starting to give up the fight.

The perpetual ethics problems of the Environmental Protection Agency chief have moved some conservatives who were firmly in his camp to reconsider. On Wednesday, his longtime mentor and fellow Oklahoma Republican, Sen. James...

06/14/2018 01:55 PM
EPA chief Scott Pruitt tapped aide, donors to help wife land job at conservative group

Environmental Protection Agency chief Scott Pruitt last year had a top aide help contact Republican donors who might offer his wife a job, eventually securing her a position at a conservative political group that has backed him for years, according to multiple individuals familiar with the matter.

06/13/2018 04:25 PM
2 of Scott Pruitt's closest aides, also facing scrutiny, are leaving the EPA

Two of Scott Pruitt's most trusted aides have given notice that they are leaving, as the Environmental Protection Agency chief faces growing scrutiny over his spending and management decisions, according to current and former agency officials who spoke on the condition of anonymity to discuss personnel...

06/06/2018 08:55 PM
EPA chief Pruitt had aide do personal chores for him

Environmental Protection Agency chief Scott Pruitt had a top aide seek a used mattress from the Trump International Hotel and perform other personal chores for him, according to an email and testimony from the aide released Monday.

The account from Pruitt scheduling director Millan Hupp is in a...

06/04/2018 04:30 PM
Triclosan could be really harmful to your gut, and it's probably in your toothpaste

Triclosan, an antimicrobial agent found in toys, toothpaste, cosmetics and more than 2,000 other consumer products, has been found to wreak havoc on the guts of mice whose blood concentrations of the compound are roughly equivalent to a typical level for humans.

One group of mice who were fed a...

05/31/2018 11:00 AM
EPA used disavowed research to justify putting dirtier trucks on the road

At a time when acts of defiance against the Trump administration are ​​​​routine in Sacramento, the rebuke that breezed through the California Assembly this month still came as a jolt. Even Trump loyalists in the chamber joined in.

The message to the administration was clear: Forget about your...

05/29/2018 10:00 AM
Emails show collaboration among EPA and climate change deniers

Newly released emails show senior Environmental Protection Agency officials collaborating with a conservative group that dismisses climate change to rally like-minded people for public hearings on science and global warming, counter negative news coverage and tout Administrator Scott Pruitt's stewardship...

05/25/2018 09:45 PM
Internal memo suggested that White House 'ignore' federal scientists' climate research

White House officials last year weighed whether to simply "ignore" climate studies produced by government scientists or to instead develop "a coherent, fact-based message about climate science," according to a memo obtained by the Washington Post.

The document, drafted Sept. 18 by Michael Catanzaro,...

05/23/2018 06:55 PM
Will Trump's pick to run the EPA office in San Francisco show up for work?

The White House has finally found someone to take on the stress of overseeing President Trump’s fossil fuel-friendly environmental agenda in the heart of hostile territory: California and nearby states.

But there’s one glaring problem.

The guy who will lead the Environmental Protection Agency’s...

05/18/2018 08:15 PM
Robert Mueller, Kim Jong Un and the psychology of the president

Whether by insight or coincidence, North Korea's leadership chose the week of the one-year anniversary of Robert S. Mueller III's appointment as special counsel to probe how eager President Trump is to make a nuclear deal.

The answer: Very eager.

Trump has made clear in his tweets and remarks that...

05/18/2018 11:45 AM
EPA's move to fast-track Orange County groundwater cleanup questioned

When a contaminated aquifer in Orange County made U.S. Environmental Protection Agency Administrator Scott Pruitt’s list of top priority sites for “immediate, intense action,” the local water district was quick to highlight the announcement.

But questions of political favoritism are swirling over...

05/09/2018 12:00 PM
Lobbyist helped broker EPA chief Scott Pruitt's $100,000 trip to Morocco

A controversial trip to Morocco by Environmental Protection Agency chief Scott Pruitt in December was partly arranged by a longtime friend and lobbyist, who accompanied Pruitt and his entourage at multiple stops and served as an informal liaison at both official and social events during the visit.

05/01/2018 10:35 PM
Two top aides to EPA chief Scott Pruitt resign amid ethics investigations

The top security official for embattled Environmental Protection Agency head Scott Pruitt abruptly left office ahead of his scheduled questioning before a congressional panel, one of two top aides whose departures were announced Tuesday amid a series of federal ethics investigations of the agency.

05/01/2018 06:50 PM
Slowdown in emissions reductions could explain stalled progress on smog, study finds

After decades of improvement, reductions in smog-forming emissions have slowed dramatically, according to new nationwide study based on satellite measurements. The findings could explain why progress cleaning air pollution in California and other parts of the country is faltering at a time when...

04/30/2018 10:10 PM
Trump and California are set to collide head-on over fuel standards

The Trump administration is speeding toward all-out war with California over fuel economy rules for cars and SUVs, proposing to revoke the state’s long-standing authority to enforce its own, tough rules on tailpipe emissions.

The move forms a key part of a proposal by Trump’s environmental and...

04/27/2018 10:00 PM
On Capitol Hill, EPA chief takes little responsibility for his troubles

Environmental Protection Agency chief Scott Pruitt offered lawmakers little contrition Thursday for questionable spending and management decisions that have plunged his agency into scandal, as he accused critics of fabricating stories about him in an effort to undermine President Trump’s agenda.

04/26/2018 10:30 PM
The Exide plant in Vernon closed 3 years ago. The vast majority of lead-contaminated properties remain uncleaned

Lupe Perez knows the soil outside her Boyle Heights apartment is contaminated with lead. But it’s not easy keeping her 3-year-old daughter away from a yard riddled with the brain-damaging poison.

“I try to tell her not to touch the dirt or play with the dirt, but, I mean, she’s going to step on...

04/26/2018 12:00 PM
Today: Weird Science at the EPA

The head of the Environmental Protection Agency is targeting the science behind many of its rules for clean air and water.


Weird Science at the EPA

EPA chief Scott Pruitt says he’s for government “transparency.” Does that mean he’s addressing the soundproof telephone booth he spent...

04/25/2018 12:00 PM
Trump's EPA proposes to block regulators from considering a wide range of scientific studies

The Trump administration launched an attack on the science behind many of the nation’s clean air and clean water rules, announcing a proposal Tuesday that would in effect prevent regulators from considering a wide range of health studies when they look at new regulations.

The plan by Environmental...

04/24/2018 10:35 PM
Trump's EPA argues more people will die in car accidents unless California fuel rules are weakened

The Trump administration is embracing a curious — and some would say dated — argument as it builds its case to weaken federal rules championed by California that require cars and SUVs to average 55 miles per gallon by 2025.

It is warning that the fuel-efficiency targets, seen by most as key to...

04/19/2018 10:00 AM
EPA chief Scott Pruitt broke law with $43,000 phone booth, investigators find

The embattled chief of the Environmental Protection Agency broke federal law when he spent more than $43,000 of agency funds to install a soundproof telephone booth in his office, federal investigators have found.

The Government Accountability Office concluded that Scott Pruitt violated the Antideficiency...

04/16/2018 05:15 PM
Trump targets smog standards, ordering EPA to make it easier for companies to comply

President Trump took aim at federal air quality standards Thursday, directing the Environmental Protection Agency to relax restrictions on state governments and businesses that have been key to cutting smog.

In a memo, the president instructed EPA Administrator Scott Pruitt to more quickly review...

04/13/2018 01:20 AM
EPA staffer alleges outsized spending by Scott Pruitt
04/12/2018 04:53 PM
What role should the L.A. River play in a future Los Angeles?

A thriving river, teeming with wildlife.

A future in which the city meets its own water needs without importing extra from elsewhere.

Can Los Angeles have both?

That’s the challenge facing a city that aspires to live within its environmental means.

If local agencies follow through on their most...

04/12/2018 10:00 AM
Rolling back fuel economy standards could mean bigger cars — and less progress on climate change

Gas prices have been so low in recent years that more Americans are choosing to buy bigger vehicles, a trend that has stymied efforts to cut auto emissions.

One thing reining in consumer appetite for trucks and SUVs has been tough fuel economy standards adopted several years ago by California and...

04/06/2018 09:50 PM