Emergency Waiver of EPA Regulations: Authorities and Legislative Proposals in the Aftermath of Hurricane Katrina [September 29, 2005] [open pdf - 64KB]
"This report reviews some of the environmental laws that could affect response and recovery actions, discusses existing waiver authority, and identifies issues raised by proposals to grant new waiver authority. The focus of the report is on regulatory programs administered by EPA, including the Clean Water Act, Superfund, and the Clean Air Act. In the short term, in the immediate aftermath of Hurricane Katrina, environmental regulations do not appear to have posed an obstacle to local, state, federal, or private response efforts, in part because existing waiver or flexibility provisions were used in certain cases. For the longer term, the report raises questions concerning the waiver authority that new legislation might grant, including what its scope (both geographic and regulatory) would be, how facilities granted waivers would be regulated after the expiration of the waiver period, the effect of such legislation on state and local requirements, and whether substantive as well as procedural requirements should be waived, if waivers are to be granted."
CRS Report for Congress, RL33107
Open CRS: http://www.opencrs.com/