Washington Post -- The Energy 202: California scores its first big environmental victory of the Trump era

June 19, 2017

Between the very little Attorney General Jeff Sessions was willing to say about his conversations with President Trump and the essentially nothing Senate Republicans were willing to say about their health-care bill, there was one revealing bit of testimony on Capitol Hill late last week -- from Environmental Protection Agency Administrator Scott Pruitt.

On Thursday, Pruitt told a House subcommittee that the EPA is not reviewing California's lone-in-the-country authority to set air-quality standards tougher than those found elsewhere in the nation.

For months, California politicians, led by Democratic Gov. Jerry Brown (D), have aggressively positioned the state as a bulwark against the Trump administration's deregulatory agenda -- for example, striking their own climate pacts with Canada and Mexico.

Since January, one cause for concern among Democrats and environmentalists is a longstanding waiver, written into the 1970 Clean Air Act, that allowed California to impose its own emissions rules for automobiles.

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