Partner Francis Lyons, a former U.S. Department of Justice environmental enforcement attorney and U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) regional administrator, was quoted on the Biden administration’s potential ability to make quick changes to environmental policy and regulation when President-Elect Joe Biden takes office.
Frank said the administration could swiftly overturn states’ lead role in environmental enforcement efforts and instead concentrate that power in Washington, D.C.
"In terms of increasing enforcement at the federal level, the government can do that any time it wishes to without even formally withdrawing that memo that said states are the presumptive lead agency," Frank said. "I think it would be neater and cleaner to formally withdraw that policy in writing in order to step up enforcement. But they could simply step up enforcement at EPA starting on Day One so long as the political will is there to do so."
He added that there may be a "reinvigoration" of information gathering by the administration to create a pipeline of evidence that would lead to more federal enforcement actions in the future.
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