The EPA plans to cut federal inspections by one-third and reduce civil enforcement cases 23 percent, the Los Angeles Times reports.
Citing the agency’s draft strategic plan, the newspaper says the EPA argues the shift for fiscal years 2014 to 2018 is a more effective way to focus on cleaning up air and water — not a withdrawal from environmental enforcement. The EPA says it’s simply shifting its focus to the biggest polluters.
“From our work on the biggest enforcement cases, such as the BP Deepwater Horizon spill, to aggressively pursuing smaller cases that can reduce harmful health impacts and have the greatest environmental benefit, our enforcement work will continue to save lives and protect our environment,” EPA spokeswoman Alisha Johnson told the Los Angeles Times.
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