Texas Clean Air Matters

TCEQ in an uphill battle to regain lost credibility

Governor Rick Perry and the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality (TCEQ) say the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) is attempting to “impose federal control over Texas” and is interested in a “blatant power grab.”

In fact, the EPA is simply making good on its warning that it would be required to intervene in Texas’ air permitting program if the TCEQ doesn’t comply with the federal Clean Air Act.  What’s more, those warnings date well back into the administration of President George W. Bush.

Still, it must have seemed to the TCEQ like they were suddenly getting it from all sides.

TCEQ’s two-weeks-from-hell in review:

  • May 25:  EPA announces it will begin issuing air permits in Texas until the TCEQ’s Air Quality Program can become federally compliant and issue permits consistent with the Clean Air Act.
  • May 26:  Texas Observer breaks story that there was an allegation of fraud against the TCEQ regarding their Fort Worth mobile air monitoring study and an internal investigation that uncovered four instances of elevated benzene levels in Fort Worth that went undisclosed to the public or city. Read More »
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