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Testing Bush on mercury.

The Bush administration's proposed weakening of mercury emissions rules for coal-fired power plants, largely written by industry lobbyists, are coming under fire from activists and even critics from within the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), providing the first real test for new EPA Administrator Mike Leavitt (see "Heavy Metal Harm," cover story, May/June 2002).

Leavitt has said he would consider strengthening the rules (which allow trading of mercury emissions), after a barrage of highly placed attacks. The Bush Greenwatch website reports that the EPA's own Children's Health Protection Advisory Committee protested, proclaiming that the plan "does not sufficiently protect our nation's children." The Bush plan (apparently lifted almost verbatim from an industry memo) would maintain high levels of mercury emissions for the next decade, with electric utilities that have contributed to the President's re-election the major beneficiaries.
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Title Annotation:Updates
Author:Motavalli, Jim
Publication:E
Article Type:Brief Article
Geographic Code:1USA
Date:May 1, 2004
Words:137
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