Tom Ewing’s Environmental Update

*  EPA announced last week the start of a new program called “Smart Sectors,” within its Office of Policy.  The SS (careful with that acronym) is based on EPA’s Sector Strategies program.  The program will “re-examine how EPA engages with industry in order to reduce unnecessary regulatory burden, create certainty and predictability, and improve the ability of both EPA and industry to conduct long-term regulatory planning while also protecting the environment and public health.”  EPA writes that industry-wide environmental performance improvement is the goal and the Agency will work with trade associations and others to “find creative ways to document environmental progress and burden reductions.”  Stay tuned, this could be important.
*  Is big “gubmint” getting smaller or not?  Well, using the number of Federal Register pages as one indicator big “gubmint” is just shrinking away.  End of 3rd quarter this year, 09/29/17 – the FR was at 45,677 pages.  Last year, 09/30/16, the page count was 67,899.  That’s a delta of 22,222.  Or, about 89 pages per business day of size 8 font that you didn’t have to read!
*  Maybe this doesn’t have anything to do with energy and environmental topics – or, more likely, everything: 09/27 was Google’s 19th birthday.  Of course we all know that because all 32 billion of us used Google that day, and looked right at the birthday thingy, likely many times, maybe without even thinking about it, taking the monstrous, friendly-faced search engine for granted, always welcoming it to be part of any and every activity, no questions asked, no need for questions, really… 19 years: Global domination of all thoughts, information and thinking about information and, really, thinking itself.  Unbelievable…   *:)) laughing

Tom Ewing
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