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‘Farm Dust’ Bill Exempts Open-Pit Mining Pollution And More

By Brad Johnson  

"‘Farm Dust’ Bill Exempts Open-Pit Mining Pollution And More"

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It's just "dust."

Yesterday, the House Energy and Commerce Committee approved the Farm Dust Regulation Prevention Act, which “goes beyond its commonly stated farm dust mission to exempt a variety of situations from Clean Air Act authority,” including particulate pollution from open-pit mining, lead smelters and chemical and industrial facilities.

Republicans are running a shell game based on numerous lies:

– Even though dust related to industrial agriculture can be toxic and dangerous, conservatives like Newt Gingrich mock the threat.

– Even though the Environmental Protection Agency isn’t planning any new regulations, Republicans claim the EPA is trying to issue a new rule.

– Using “farm dust” as cover, Republicans write legislative language to exempt toxic pollution from mining and other industrial activities.

The “farm dust” scam is pernicious and deadly. But it’s a polluter lobbyist’s dream.

Update

Timothy Noah calls out the New York Times Magazine for saying dust regulation is “minutiae”: “Not to nitpick here, but farm-dust regulation isn’t ‘entrepreneurial minutiae.’ It’s political bullshit. There is no pending farm-dust regulation.”

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