TOP STORIES/HEADLINES: Week of May 25-29, 2020


The NTAA has published the 2020 Update to A White Paper Detailing the Science and Connections Between Air Pollution, Tribes, and Public Health

The NTAA originally published this white paper in 2019 as a resource to Tribes. The white paper has now been updated to reflect research that has been published since then on the connection between air quality and health, as well as the emerging connections between air pollution and health outcomes from COVID-19. The 2020 update can now be found using the above link or by going directly to the NTAA’s website, and will be included as an attachment to the NTAA 2020 Status of Tribal Air Report (STAR), which will be published June 22.



Ambient Air Quality/EPA/NTAA/Tribes

Drilled – Trump Is Racing to Finalize Environmental Rollbacks. This Obscure Regulation May Be One Reason Why


Forbes – America’s Air Is Getting Worse: Here’s Why


National Law Review – U.S. EPA Proposes Rule That Would Transform the Guidance Process


E&E News – EPA starts ‘measured and deliberate’ reopening


E&E News – Air Pollution: Lawsuit marks first step in legal brawl over toxics rule


E&E News – Army Corps makes last-minute change in Pebble plan


Air Quality News – Air pollution linked to Parkinson’s disease


Bloomberg Law – Insight: What’s at Stake in EPA’s MATS Finding Reversal


Biomass Magazine – EPA opens comment period on wood heater proposal


National Association of Clean Air Agencies – Washington Update


Climate Change/Energy

Independent – Trump administration slows on fracking plans after outcry for impacted Navajo Nation


Reuters – Help us protect the headwaters of the Amazon from oil companies, elders say


Inside Climate News – New York’s Use of Landmark Climate Law Could Resound in Other States


New Orleans Public Radio – ‘There Is No Way Back Anymore’: Louisiana’s Coastal Land Loss Is Inevitable


E&E News – Wis. utility to close coal plant blamed for high costs


E&E News – What’s next for oil? 3 questions answered


E&E News – Trail of spills haunts Dakota Access developer


NY Times – ‘Expect More’: Climate Change Raises Risk of Dam Failures


NY Times – What a Week’s Disasters Tell Us About Climate and the Pandemic


CarbonBrief – Webinar [recording]: What impact is Covid-19 having on global CO2 emissions?


ENN – Marine Species Are Outpacing Terrestrial Species In The Race Against Global Warming


Toxics/Mobile Sources

The Hill – Automakers fight effort to freeze fuel efficiency standards


AP – Democrats protest removal of Transportation watchdog


NPR – Our Pandemic Habits Cut Carbon Emissions, But It’s Not Clear They’ll Last


NPR – On Nearly Emptied Roads, Motor Vehicle Fatality Rate Spikes By 14% In March


EPA – EPA Takes Next Step to Implement PFAS Legislation


E&E News – Tesla’s ‘Battery Day’: Business as usual or an EV coup?


E&E News – Commuter are adapting to the virus. What it means for CO2


CarbonBrief – Fuel savings in US cars have ‘cut 17bn tonnes of CO2 since 1975’


Indoor Air Quality

National Herald – Indoor air quality and asthma during COVID-19


Fast Company – We spend 90% of our time inside – why don’t we care that indoor air is so polluted?


Be sure to subscribe to EPA’s IAQ Bulletins

2020-05-27T16:53:37+00:00May 27th, 2020|TOP STORIES & HEADLINES|

TOP STORIES/HEADLINES: Week of May 18-22, 2020


The NTAA Submitted Comments on EPA’s Transparency in Science SNPRM

The NTAA submitted a comment letter on EPA’s Transparency in Science supplemental proposal on May 18, 2020. You can view the letter here, as well as access all of NTAA’s Policy Resource Kits here. Also, the following article highlights other responses to this proposal: Inside Climate News – EPA’s ‘Secret Science’ Rule Meets with an Outpouring of Protest on Last Day for Public Comment



Ambient Air Quality/EPA/NTAA/Tribes

NPR – Traffic Is Way Down Because Of Lockdown, But Air Pollution? Not So Much


The Hill – EPA effort to limit guidance could undermine past administration policy


The Hill – Trump orders agencies to cut regulations that ‘inhibit economic recovery’


Reuters – In Brief: 9th Circuit won’t stay ruling canceling Keystone XL pipeline permit


PBS – Keystone pipeline project proceeds amidst COVID-19 pandemic


The Hill – House Democrats seek to codify environmental inequality mapping tool


Earther – ‘I’m Scared’: Study Links Cancer Alley Air Pollution to Higher Death Rates From Covid-19


Yes Magazine – What’s in a Social Justice Diet?


Washington Post – The Energy 202: Public hearings on Zoom have Native Americans worried they won’t be heard on oil projects


The Guardian – Canada: Wet’suwet’en sign historic deal to negotiate land rights


Reuters – Judge tosses CERCLA lawsuit against U.S. Steel over coke plant emissions


Heated – A deadly re-opening. The Grand Canyon is re-opening, apparently without informing visitors of the Navajo Nation’s strict lockdown.


Reuters – Court rules U.S. environment agency must protect states from upwind air pollution


National Association of Clean Air Agencies – Washington Update


Climate Change/Energy

Al Jazeera – A moment of reckoning – when coronavirus meets climate change


Reuters – Trump admin slaps solar, wind operators with retroactive rent bills


The Guardian – Coal industry will never recover after coronavirus pandemic, say experts


Wyoming Public Media – Employment, Revenue Threatened With “Multi-Year Low” Natural Gas Pricing


NY Times – Natural Gas Exports Slow as Pandemic Reduces Global Demand


Axios – The post-coronavirus greenhouse gas emissions bounce back


Mother Jones – There’s a Lot Less Pollution But Climate Change Is Still Getting Worse


Time – As the Rest of the World Plans a Green Recovery, America Is Once Again Falling Behind


Earther – Looming Landslide in Alaska Could Trigger Enormous Tsunami at Any Moment, Scientists Warn


Ensia – Cobalt Is Critical to the Renewable Energy Transition. How Can We Minimize Its Social and Environmental Cost?


NY Times – In the Shadows of America’s Smokestacks, Virus Is One More Deadly Risk


Toxics/Mobile Sources

Washington Post – EPA staff warned that mileage rollbacks had flaws. Trump officials ignored them.


Bloomberg Law – California Sues EPA, Highway Agency Over Emissions Waiver


The Guardian – Is the Covid-19 crisis the catalyst for greening the world’s airlines?


E&E News – Justices reject renewable fuel standard, NEPA disputes


Bloomberg Law – Round-the-Clock Cremations Stoke Mercury Fears for Neighborhoods


Utility Dive – Energy storage poised to tackle grid challenges from rising EVs as mobile chargers bring new flexibility


NY Times – The Pandemic Will Permanently Change the Auto Industry


Grist – Will social distancing kill car-free culture?


Reuters – Exclusive: Tesla’s secret batteries aim to rework the math for electric cars and the grid


Indoor Air Quality

E&E News – EPA packs ‘economic relief’ for industry into stove rule


American Council on Science and Health – Air Pollution And COVID-19: Stay In Or Get Out?


Be sure to subscribe to EPA’s IAQ Bulletins

2020-05-20T16:16:46+00:00May 20th, 2020|TOP STORIES & HEADLINES|

TOP STORIES/HEADLINES: Week of May 11-15, 2020


NTAA Publishes a Fact Sheet on EPA’s Proposed Updates to the NAAQS for Particulate Matter

EPA is proposing to retain the NAAQS for particulate matter without changes. The NTAA is developing a full Policy Resource Kit (PRK), including a Fact Sheet, Tribal Template Letter, Informational Webinar, and Comment Letter to help your Tribe in responding to this proposal. The deadline to comment is June 29, 2020. The EPA will be holding public hearings on May 20 and May 21. The Fact Sheet can be found here and stay tuned for the rest of the PRK!



Ambient Air Quality/EPA/NTAA/Tribes

Grist – EPA settlements are supposed to hold polluters accountable. Will coronavirus get them off the hook?


New York Times Op-ed – A Life on and Off the Navajo Nation: The reservation has some of the most coronavirus cases per capita in the country.


E&E News – Tensions flare over sluggish EPA revamp of cost-benefit rule


E&E News – Agency leans on 1870s ‘housekeeping’ law to block science


E&E News – Tribes seek delay in Trump’s Tongass rule


Grist – ‘Get the hell off’: The indigenous fight to stop a uranium mine in the Black Hills


Washington Post – The Energy 202: A Harvard study tying coronavirus death rates to pollution is causing an uproar in Washington


Wisconsin Public Radio – Tracking Coronavirus Impacts On Air Quality


EPA – North Dakota Tribes receive $810,000 to cleanup and revitalize properties


EPA – Northern Cheyenne Tribe receives $364,500 to cleanup and revitalize properties


E&E News – Watchdog to study coronavirus’ impacts on EPA


E&E News – Coal: Meet America’s 10 largest emitters


NY Times – The Trump Administration Is Reversing Nearly 100 Environmental Rules. Here’s the Full List.

Editor’s note: The “Air pollution and emissions” category tops the list in the number of both completed and total rollbacks.


NY Times – Tribal Nations Face Most Severe Crisis in Decades as the Coronavirus Closes Casinos


National Association of Clean Air Agencies – Washington Update


Climate Change/Energy

Reuters – States ask Trump administration to pay laid off oil workers to plug abandoned wells


Axios – Too hot to handle


Reuters – Life-threatening extreme heat set to trap millions indoors by 2060


E&E News – Gas peakers to renewable storage: The next climate fight?


Native Sun News Today – Pipeline loses permit, but construction continues


NY Times – Will the Coronavirus Crisis Trump the Climate Crisis?


CarbonBrief – Leading economists: Green coronavirus recovery also better for economy


CarbonBrief – Analysis: What impact will the coronavirus pandemic have on atmospheric CO2?


Utility Dive – Trump’s security order could have ‘chilling effect,’ slow smart grid deployment, experts say


Bloomberg Green – Covid Crisis Will Be Overshadowed by Climate Threat, Engie Says


The New Republic – There Are Green Jobs Hiding in the Oilfields


Toxics/Mobile Sources

E&E News – Lack of rail limits U.S. ability to lower airline emissions


Reuters – U.S. pipeline regulator strikes down Washington state’s crude-by-rail safety limits


Gizmodo – The EPA Introduced the First-Ever US Airplane Carbon Regulations


Bloomberg – The Car Is Staging a Recovery, Spurring Oil’s Recovery


E&E News – Car Rules: Green group threatens to sue EPA for withholding docs


NY Times – New Breed of Pickups Mixes Horsepower and Battery Power


C&EN – CFC replacements are a source of persistent organic pollution in the Artic


CNBC – Goldman Sachs warns jet fuel demand may never fully recover from the crisis


Indoor Air Quality

Safety and Health Magazine – COVID-19 pandemic: EPA, CDC team on guidance for keeping workplaces clean when reopening


EPA – EPA Makes it Easier for Consumers to Find Safe, Effective Disinfectant Products to Use Against the Novel Coronavirus


Middletown Transcript – Carper asks if EPA plans to reverse decision stopping sale of residential wood heaters


Vox – Gas stoves can generate unsafe levels of indoor air pollution


Bloomberg – California Wants to See How Cooking With Gas Affects Indoor Air


Be sure to subscribe to EPA’s IAQ Bulletins

2020-05-13T16:45:27+00:00May 13th, 2020|TOP STORIES & HEADLINES|

TOP STORIES/HEADLINES: Week of May 4-8, 2020


COVID-19 Economic Impact Check Information

The IRS has developed this webpage to help ensure everyone who is eligible receives their economic impact payment.

It’s Air Quality Awareness Week!

Stay tuned here for more information.

The theme for this year is Better Air, Better Health! Our goal is to promote events that increase air quality awareness and encourage people to check the Air Quality Index (AQI) daily. We plan to focus on the following daily topics this year, featuring one each day on the AQAW website (which will be released on May 4, the first day of AQAW):

  • Monday – Wildfires & Smoke
  • Tuesday – Asthma & Your Health
  • Wednesday – Where’s Your AQI Coming From?
  • Thursday – Air Quality Around the World
  • Friday – Shout-out of state and local events

U.S. EPA would also like to share with you a new student engagement activity that was developed this year, Why I Care about Clean Air (instructions found in link), that can easily be distributed and completed from home.

Flexibility with GAP Awards during Coronavirus

EPA’s Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) on Grant Issues in Response to the Novel Coronavirus (COVID-19) Public Health Emergency is available here and addresses generally applicable policies and practices. These FAQs address a broad number of issues, including grant procedures, allowable costs, disruption of services, procurement, and extensions, among other topics. Each individual work plan and award situation may be different based on your tribe’s unique situation and tribal personnel policies. We encourage you to work closely with your project officer to address your specific questions. You can also subscribe to the EPA Grants Listserv so that you may receive updates on information as it becomes available. Generally, EPA is working to provide the maximum flexibility permitted by law to continue financial assistance support to tribes and other grant recipients.  For GAP recipients, this means:

  • You may continue to conduct your GAP work plan activities while teleworking.  If your current work plan activities are not suitable for telework, you may work with your project officer to re-negotiate some or portions of your work plan,
  • You may request an extension of your project period, and
  • If in the 4th year of a stand-alone GAP award (the regulatory limit), AIEO is requesting a one-time waiver so that impacted GAP awards may be extended into a 5th

Proposed Rule: Review of the National Ambient Air Quality Standards for Particulate Matter

EPA has published this proposal in the Federal Register, and the NTAA is developing a full Policy Resource Kit. The proposal states that no changes to the NAAQS for particulate matter will be taken at this time. The deadline to comment is June 29, 2020, and two virtual public hearings will be held on May 20 and May 21.



Ambient Air Quality/EPA/NTAA/Tribes

EPA – EPA Provides Grant Funding to Support Environmental Justice Communities Impacted by COVID-19

E&E News – Tribes: Pandemic relief starts flowing

NBC News – 173 years, $170: Why Irish people are donating to help Native Americans hit by coronavirus

EPA – Science Advisory Board Issues Comments on Agency’s Draft Strengthening Transparency in Regulatory Science Rulemaking

Editor’s note: the NTAA has developed a Policy Resource Kit in response to this SNPRM, and will be submitting a comment letter opposing the proposal on May 18.

Alliance for Green Heat – EPA amending wood heater deadline to address pandemic sales slump

AU News – Ozone layer: Largest ever tear over the Arctic has closed

EPA – EPA, CDC Release Guidance for Cleaning and Disinfecting Spaces Where Americans Live, Work, and Play

Indian Country Today – Virtual meetings set for drilling plan near Chaco national park

Indian Country Today – Pressure mounts as tribes seek more time on drilling plan

National Association of Clean Air Agencies – Washington Update

Climate Change/Energy

AP – Judge cancels hundreds of oil, gas leases in Montana

Bloomberg – TC Energy Says Montana Ruling Could Delay Keystone XL by a Year

AP – Takeaways from renewable energy’s struggles amid pandemic

NBC – Cheap oil? A pandemic? No big deal for renewable energy, experts say

Indian Country Today – Virus darkens prospects for solar, wind projects

NY Times – Billions in Clean Energy Loans Go Unused as Coronavirus Ravages Economy

Reuters – Next risk? Coronavirus pandemic underscores climate health threats

Business Insider – How climate change could make infectious diseases even more difficult to combat in the future

E&E News – An Alaska glacier collapsed. Warming was the likely trigger

E&E News – Is gas really better than coal for the climate?

Yes! Magazine – Carbon Emissions Turned Back 10 Years

NY Times – Emissions Declines Will Set Records This Year. But It’s Not Good News.

CarbonBrief – IEA: Coronavirus impact on CO2 emissions six times larger than 2008 financial crisis

NY Times – The Business of Burps: Scientists Smell Profit in Cow Emissions

Toxics/Mobile Sources

Bloomberg – Single-Use Plastics Make a Comeback on Pandemic Fears

EPA – EPA Announces Cooperative Agreement to Support the National Tribal Toxics Council (NTTC)

EPA – EPA Highlights Enforcement Actions against Those Who Violate the Defeat Device and Tampering Prohibitions under the Clean Air Act

Indoor Air Quality

Grist – Study: Gas-powered appliances may be hazardous for your health

Utility Dive – Elevating energy efficiency – At last!

YubaNet – How to Reduce Your Exposure to Indoor Air Pollution during COVID-19 Related Lockdowns: New Guide

Be sure to subscribe to EPA’s IAQ Bulletins

2020-05-06T16:05:10+00:00May 6th, 2020|TOP STORIES & HEADLINES|

TOP STORIES/HEADLINES: Week of April 27-May 1, 2020


Welcome to Mariah Ashley, the new National Tribal Air Association Program Coordinator!

After a thorough search, Ms. Ashley comes to NTAA after working for ITEP’s Climate Change Program. Previous to that, she had more than three years of progressive experience as the Operations Manager for the Black Mesa Water Coalition. BMWC is an indigenous-led, grassroots organization that focuses on food sovereignty, cultural and Indigenous knowledge, as well as empowering Diné youth through organizing. As a member of the Navajo Nation, Ms. Ashley has also worked for the Navajo Nation’s Division of Natural Resources in the Water Management Office as an intern. Ms. Ashley holds an Associate Degree of Applied Science from Diné College and a Bachelor of Applied Science in Environmental Science with a Geology Emphasis from Northern Arizona University. Ms. Ashley joins the NTAA staff to support the NTAA Executive Committee, NTAA member Tribes, and Tribal air programs across Indian Country on May 4th. Please join us in welcoming Mariah to NTAA! You can reach her at


TAMS Steering Committee Nomination

The TAMS Steering Committee is composed of a rotating roster of tribal environmental professionals and ex officio members who meet regularly to discuss tribal air quality monitoring and other air quality technical support needs. Nomination is open until May 31, 2020. Nominate a recipient here.


Ambient Air Quality/EPA/NTAA/Tribes

Department of the Interior – White House Re-Establishes Council on Native American Affairs to Support Continued Inter-Agency Coordination with Indian Country


ABC News – Tribes urge Treasury to disburse coronavirus relief funding


BBC – How air pollution exacerbates Covid-19


The Guardian – Coronavirus detected on particles of air pollution


Bloomberg News – Virus Prompts California to Study Air Pollution, Public Health


Grist – The world is on lockdown. So where are all the carbon emissions coming from?


EPA – Santa Ynez Band of Chumash Indians Recognized as EPA WasteWise National Tribal Partner of the Year


EPA – Kickapoo Nation School Students in Kansas Win EPA Environmental Award, as EPA Celebrates Earth Day and Environmental Education


Desert Sun – Environmental groups sue EPA over smog, air quality rules in Imperial County


E&E News – Study: Agency sat on $16M in enforcement funds


Yes! Magazine – What We Can Learn About Resilience from Indigenous Leaders


Indian Country Today – ‘Indian Country is particularly vulnerable to COVID-19’


USA Today – Native American tribes have been hit hard by coronavirus, and they’re battling red tape to get help


National Association of Clean Air Agencies – Washington Update


Climate Change/Energy

Indian Country Today – Court ruling puts pipeline projects across the country on hold


Indian Country Today – Tribes’ billion dollar oil industry…and now?


The Week – How to bail out the oil industry without destroying the planet


E&E News – Here’s what an oil bailout could mean for emissions


Huffpost – Falling Oil Prices Breathe New Life into an Old Idea: Nationalize the Industry


NPR – It’s Hard To Think About Climate Change During A Pandemic. Here’s how to stay Engaged.


Colorlines – Earth Day: Deadly Impact of Climate Change and COVID-19 Collide in Low-Wage Earning Communities


High Country News – How climate research continues during stay-at-home orders


ENN – Reducing the Carbon Footprint of Artificial Intelligence


NY Times – Here’s How Coronavirus Could Raise Cities’ Risk for Climate Disasters


Toxics/Mobile Sources

Cleveland Scene – Failure to Support Vehicle Pollution Standards Hurts GM in Customer Survey


Air Quality News – New database for car buyers reveals vehicle pollution levels


Indoor Air Quality

Salt Lake Tribune – Wyoming tribes face unique challenges in coronavirus fight


WISC News – Chemists look for ways to assess and improve indoor air quality


Be sure to subscribe to EPA’s IAQ Bulletins

2020-04-29T15:40:30+00:00April 29th, 2020|TOP STORIES & HEADLINES|

TOP STORIES/HEADLINES: Week of April 20-24, 2020


American Lung Association – Remembering Janice Nolen

A nationally recognized air quality expert and author of key air quality reports has died. Janice Nolen, a longtime American Lung Association official, died at her home on April 15, 2020. Ms. Nolen directed the Lung Association’s actions in air quality regulatory advocacy and litigation. Her work in this area resulted in the strengthening of the national air quality standards for ozone and particle pollution. She led the National Radon Action Plan Leadership Council that developed the U.S. National Radon Action Plan to reduce radon risk in five million homes. She formerly served on the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s Clean Air Act Advisory Committee.

Editor’s note: The NTAA is deeply saddened by the loss of Janice Nolen. She was a great advocate for clean air and friend of the NTAA. If you would like to offer well-wishes and condolences to Janice’s family, please consider the following sites:

To honor Janice’s memory, the American Lung Association has created the Janice E. Nolen Healthy Air Internship, ensuring younger professionals continue the important work of protecting our nation’s air quality. If you would like to make a donation in memory of Janice Nolen, your gift will continue Janice’s legacy with this dedicated internship to mentor young advocates.


The American Lung Association has released the 2020 State of the Air Report.

According to ALA, “This report is dedicated to Janice E. Nolen, the leading force behind the history of this report and a tireless champion of lung health and healthy air.” This year marks the 50th anniversary of the Clean Air Act, which is responsible for dramatic improvements in air quality. Despite this, a new report from the American Lung Association finds nearly half of the nation’s population – 150 million people – lived with and breathed polluted air, placing their health and lives at risk. The 21st annual “State of the Air” report finds that climate change continues to make air pollution worse, with many western communities again experiencing record-breaking spikes in particle pollution due to wildfires. Amid the COVID-19 pandemic, the impact of air pollution on lung health is of heightened concern. The 2020 “State of the Air” report analyzed data from 2016, 2017 and 2018, the three years with the most recent quality-assured air pollution data. Notably, those three years were among the five hottest recorded in global history.


Coronavirus Virtual Town Hall: Improving Health within Our Communities, Wednesday, April 22, 2:00 PM – 3:00 PM, Eastern Time

The Johns Hopkins Center for American Indian Health and Indian Health Service will hold a virtual town hall meeting on April 22 and 29 from 2-3 pm EDT. Target audience: Public health nurses, community health representatives (CHR), health educators, and others working on the frontlines of COVID-19 prevention in Indian Country. Objectives include:

  • Understand the current state of COVID-19 disease
  • Highlight community-based response activities
  • Provide information on key resources

With an opportunity for Q & A with the experts. Register for the webinar here.


The National Association of Clean Air Agencies releases a “Clean Air Educational Activities and Resources” document

In response to COVID-19 and the closure of schools across America, federal, state, local and Tribal clean air agencies are making available educational activities and resources to teachers, parents and students providing opportunities for continued learning while staying safe at home. This document lists some of the outstanding educational resources that have been made available. We will continue to update this list as we learn about more educational resources.



Ambient Air Quality/EPA/NTAA/Tribes

New York Times – 50 Years of Earth Day: What’s Better Today, and what’s worse


Indian Country Today – EPA rejects Obama-era rules on air quality; critics cite COVID-19 link


Safety and Health Magazine – Amid COVID-19 pandemic, lawmakers urge EPA to extend comment periods


Medium – The Most Quiet of Killers


EPA – EPA Finalizes MATS Supplemental Cost Finding and “Risk and Technology Review”


NY Times – E.P.A. Weakens Controls on Mercury


The Hill – Green groups, coal companies push to have EPA power plant rollback scrapped


AP – ‘They’re killing us,’ Texas residents say of Trump rollbacks


NPR – 10 Years after Deepwater Horizon Oil Spill, Industry Says It’s Better Prepared


Anchorage Daily News – Pebble mine opponents lose court case over 2014 EPA report


Reuters – A breath of fresh air


NPR – Climate Change Undercuts Air Pollution Improvements


EPA – Children’s Healthy Learning Environments Grant Initiative RFA June 2020


EPA – EPA Announces Coronavirus (COVID-19) Resources for State, Local, and Tribal Governments


Indianz – Indigenous celebrate victory against Dakota Access Pipeline, but remain wary of Judge Boasberg


Utility Dive – 14 states press EPA to rescind coronavirus-driven enforcement policy as NGOs file lawsuit


National Association of Clean Air Agencies – Washington Update


Climate Change/Energy

NY Times – A crash course on climate change, 50 years after the first Earth Day


Reuters – Coronavirus crisis threatens to cut off clean electricity lifeline for poor


The New Yorker – The Coronavirus and Climate Change, the Great Crises of Our Time


NBC News – Is fungus the answer to climate change? Student who grew a mushroom canoe says yes.


Grist – Can ‘carbon-smart’ farming play a key role in taking on climate change?


Reuters – With bees on decline, mechanical pollination may be solution


Huffpost – The Fight to Stop Fossil Fuel Financing Is Poised To Get Some Powerful New Allies


Ensia – How Can We Best Protect Our Global Life-Support System In Times Like These?


Ensia – Three Workable Strategies for Putting a Big Dent in Methane, the “Other” Greenhouse Gas


E&E News – CEO: Oil drilling, fracking could drop another 60%


E&E News – BLM reviews CO2 pipelines, but will anyone build them?


E&E News – How the pandemic upended climate politics


NY Times – The ‘Profoundly Radical’ Message of Earth Day’s First Organizer


ENN – Stanford Researchers Find Methane Lakes from U.S. Water Heaters Are High, But Fixable


Toxics/Mobile Sources

Santa Maria Times – Santa Ynez Band of Chumash Indians named Waste Wise ‘Partner of the Year’ by EPA


BBC – Climate change: ‘Bath sponge’ breakthrough could boost cleaner cars


Bloomberg – Electric Vehicles Buoyed by a Backlog and Fresh Air


E&E News – Economic toll endangers key climate goal: Cleaner cars


High Country News – Uranium mining threatens our home, the Grand Canyon


Indoor Air Quality

Inhabitant – How clean is your indoor air?


Be sure to subscribe to EPA’s IAQ Bulletins

2020-04-22T16:23:13+00:00April 22nd, 2020|TOP STORIES & HEADLINES|

TOP STORIES/HEADLINES: Week of April 13-17, 2020


2020 Tribal DERA RFA is open!

EPA’s Office of Transportation and Air Quality is now soliciting applications nationwide for the 2020 Tribal Diesel Emissions Reduction Act (DERA) funded projects that achieve significant reductions in diesel emissions and diesel emissions exposure, particularly from fleets located in areas designated as having poor air quality. EPA anticipates $2 million will be awarded to eligible Tribal applicants for two to eight grants. The deadline for submission of applications is Thursday, July 9, 2020, at 11:59 p.m. (ET). More information can be found in the Mobile Sources Resources & Funding section below.


The Tribal Healthy Homes Network, ITEP and NTAA participated in a webinar last week on COVID-19 Cleaning and Disinfecting Tribal homes. Click here to view the recorded webinar.


ITEP’s American Indian Air Quality Training Program would like your feedback!

While ITEP is not currently able to provide in-person trainings for Tribes on air quality issues due to the COVID-19 pandemic, we can make ourselves available to provide tribes with webinars and on-line learning opportunities.  Answering the questions at this link will greatly aid us in understanding how best we can meet your current training needs. If you have any questions, contact



Ambient Air Quality/EPA/NTAA/Tribes

EPA – EPA Proposes to Retain NAAQS for Particulate Matter


Axios – EPA declines to change air quality standards despite health risks


Salon – Higher rates of air pollution linked to more COVID-19 deaths, study shows


NPR – A Treacherous Choice and a Treaty Right


NPR – With Coronavirus Lockdown, India’s Cities See Clear Blue Skies as Air Pollution Drops


High Country News – Casino closures in Indian Country hit core tribal services


Grist – Coronavirus could cause the first big emissions drop in a decade


EPA – EPA Takes Corrective Action on Standards for Coal-Refuse Power Plants


EPA – EPA Requests Comments on Designations and Recommendations for Recycled-Content Products


Emory – Emory scientists working with NASA to map air pollution and its impact on health


NASA – NASA Satellite Data Show 30 Percent Drop In Air Pollution Over Northeast U.S.


National Association of Clean Air Agencies – Washington Update


Climate Change/Energy

U.S EPA – Latest Inventory of U.S. Greenhouse Gas Emissions and Sinks Shows Long-Term Reductions, with Annual Variation


E&E News – Want to cut CO2? Here’s a technology playbook


Green Tech Media – 7 Transmission Projects That Could Unlock a Renewable Energy Bounty


LA Times – Should we spend billions on clean energy? It worked during the last crisis


The Hill – Democrat questions WH transparency in rollback of bedrock environmental law


Vanity Fair – “Climate Change Is Exacerbating…Risks”: Stressed by Coronavirus, First Responders Prep for a Dangerous Summer


E&E News – Exxon moves to slash methane emissions at 1,000 sites


E&E News – How ending the price war on oil could affect emissions


Yes! Magazine – How the Climate Change Generation Is Redefining Community


High Country News – Tribal nations demand response to climate relocation


CarbonBrief – Deep emissions cuts this decade could prevent ‘abrupt ecological collapse’


CarbonBrief – Analysis: Coronavirus set to cause largest ever annual fall in CO2 emissions


Utility Dive – Clearer picture of coronavirus-driven grid load declines emerges in US after weeks of lockdowns


SUNY College of Environmental Science and Forestry – Don’t Look to Mature Forests to Soak up Carbon Dioxide Emissions


NPR – Carbon Emissions Are Falling, But Still Not Enough, Scientist Say


Toxics/Mobile Sources

EPA – EPA Proposes Money-Saving Updates to Existing Gasoline, Diesel, Other Fuels Regulations


Grist – Green transportation, from electric cars to walkable cities


Utility Dive – Global EV sales will drop 43% in 2020 due to COVID-19, lower oil prices: WoodMac


Bloomberg News – Makers of Covid-19 Disinfectants Given More Flexibility by EPA


Indoor Air Quality

Discover – Spending Lots of Time Indoors? Here’s How to Improve Air Quality in Your Home


Curbed – Breathe cleaner air everywhere


EWG – Cooped Up Because Of Coronavirus? Keep the Air Fresh


Be sure to subscribe to EPA’s IAQ Bulletins

2020-04-15T16:03:40+00:00April 15th, 2020|TOP STORIES & HEADLINES|

TOP STORIES/HEADLINES: Week of April 6-10, 2020


NY TimesNew Research Links Air Pollution to Higher Coronavirus Death Rates

From the article: Coronavirus patients in areas that had high levels of air pollution before the pandemic are more likely to die from the infection than patients in cleaner parts of the country, according to a new nationwide study that offers the first clear link between long-term exposure to pollution and Covid-19 death rates.


Free Webinar Today at 3 pm EDT!

Issues Affecting Native American Communities during the COVID-19 Crisis

The American Bar Association (ABA) is hosting a number of free webinars related to Covid-19. The COVID 19 crisis is affecting Native American tribes and urban communities in ways that are unique to this population in terms of health challenges, economic impact and legal issues.  This webinar will discuss how Native Americans are being impacted through this crisis both from a health perspective and an economic perspective.  This webinar will be segmented into three parts: (1) First, there will be discussion of the provisions in the stimulus packages that are directed to Native communities; (2) Second, the panelists will discuss the unique health and operational challenges in both rural and urban Native communities; and (3) Finally, this webinar will address the economic and legal impact both in the short-term and long-term in tribal communities.

Date: Wednesday, April 8, 2020 at 3:00 p.m. EDT. Register here. More information is available here.

The NTAA Requests Photos of Air Quality Work from Member Tribes

The NTAA is putting out a request for Member Tribes to send in photos to use on the cover of the 2020 Status of Tribal Air Report (STAR) that highlight work being done to improve air quality. Photos may include air monitoring equipment, staff completing assessments, education/outreach, clean energy development, clean mobility efforts, or any other air quality related image. Please include photo credit and send images to by April 23.


National Congress of American Indians (NCAI) – COVID-19 Resources for Indian Country



Ambient Air Quality/EPA/NTAA/Tribes

EPA – EPA Announces Extended Comment Period on Supplement to Science Transparency Proposed Rule

Editor’s Note: NTAA recorded an informational webinar for Tribes yesterday on this proposal that can be found on NTAA’s Policy Resource Kit website here.


Cronkite News – EPA defends plan to ease compliance requirements in face of coronavirus


NPR – As Coronavirus Cases Rise, Navajo Nation Tries To Get Ahead Of Pandemic


Colorlines – Native Americans Fight Multiple COVID-19 Crises


U.S. EPA – EPA to Donate Personal Protective Equipment to State and Local Responders Fighting COVID-19 across the Country


Tribal Tribune – Need something to do while stuck at home? Get ready for fire season with these suggestions


E&E News – Pandemic stalls water, tribal lands cases indefinitely


National Association of Clean Air Agencies – Washington Update


Climate Change/Energy

Yes! Magazine – Saving People from Coronavirus Can Teach Us How to Do the Same for Climate Change


Carbon Brief – Coronavirus: What could lifestyle changes mean for tackling climate change?


NPR – Pandemic Delays International Climate Change Negotiations


E&E News – Carbon Capture: EPA issues rule for CO2 injection


Toxics/Mobile Sources

The Hill – EPA loses case seeking modeling behind Obama mileage rollback


NY Times – Trump Calls New Fuel Economy Rule a Boon. Some Experts See Steep Costs.


AP – Cleanup of US nuclear waste takes back seat as virus spreads


The Hill – Advocates raise questions about proposal to allow some nuclear waste to be disposed in landfills


Indoor Air Quality

Oregon Live – 5 ways to improve indoor air quality, thwart respiratory illnesses


Huffpost – Cleaning Your Home for Coronavirus? Don’t Forget Your Indoor Air.


Be sure to subscribe to EPA’s IAQ Bulletins

2020-04-08T16:45:30+00:00April 8th, 2020|TOP STORIES & HEADLINES|

TOP STORIES/HEADLINES: Week of March 30 – April 3, 2020


NTAA Releases Tribal Template Letter for Commenting on EPA’s Supplemental Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (SNPRM) for Strengthening Transparency in Regulatory Science

The NTAA has released this Tribal Template Comment Letter, to help your Tribe in developing a response to EPA. Comments are due by April 17, 2020. The NTAA is also holding an informational webinar for Tribes to better understand this proposal and ask questions on Tuesday, April 7, 2020 at 2pm ET. Register, view documents, and hear the audio for the informational webinar here. Visit NTAA’s website for the complete PRK!


Tribal Consultation Announced on $8B Coronavirus Relief Fund for Tribes

The U.S. Department of the Interior and U.S. The Department of Treasury announced today through a Dear Tribal Leader Letter from the Assistant Secretary of Indian Affairs that they will be holding at least two Tribal Leader Consultations to determine how to distribute $8 billion in funds set aside for tribal governments and tribal entities in the Coronavirus Relief Fund within The CARES Act. In addition to attending these Consultations, Tribal Leaders are encouraged to provide their input in writing no later than April 13 by emailing and

Explore the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s newly designed and updated online Air Sensor Toolbox. The toolbox offers easier navigation and more information on what EPA is doing to advance and support the development of air sensors for measuring local air quality.

  • Learn about air sensor performance, evaluation and use
  • Understand your air sensor readings
  • Explore EPA’s air sensor research projects and activities
  • Find resources for your air sensor project

Sign up for alerts about newly released publications, events and other air sensor announcements.



Ambient Air Quality/EPA/NTAA/Tribes

Time – Federal Government Revoking Reservation Status for Mashpee Wampanoag Tribe’s 300 Acres


EPA – EPA Announces Enforcement Discretion Policy for COVID-19 Pandemic


Mother Jones – “An Open License to Pollute”: The EPA Has Halted Enforcement Due to COVID-19


NY Times – Coronavirus Doesn’t Slow Trump’s Regulatory Rollbacks


NY Times – Trump’s Environmental Rollbacks Find Opposition Within: Staff Scientists


Los Angeles Times – No running water. No electricity. On Navajo Nation, coronavirus creates worry and confusion as cases surge


Indian Country Today – Youth and Elders test positive for COVID-19 amid calls for donations


E&E News – Lax pollution enforcement can stress hospitals during virus


Al Jazeera – Indigenous race into Ecuador’s Amazon to escape coronavirus


Huffpost – States Quietly Pass Laws Criminalizing Fossil Fuel Protests amid Coronavirus Chaos


EPA – EPA Continues Efforts to Help Increase the Availability of Disinfectant Products for Use against the Novel Coronavirus


ENN – The Shutdown Is Clearing New York’s Air. Don’t Cheer Too Hard.


NPR – Plastic Wars: Industry Spent Millions Selling Recycling – To Sell More Plastic


National Association of Clean Air Agencies – Washington Update


Climate Change/Energy – Department of Energy announces Up To $15 Million for Tribes to Deploy Energy Technology


AP – Earth Day video challenge encourages doing 1 good thing


The Hill – Court Oks Trump repeal of Obama public lands fracking rule


Vox – The missing puzzle piece for getting to 100% clean power


Bloomberg – Professor Sees Climate Mayhem Lurking Behind Covid-19 Outbreak


BBC – Will Covid-19 have a lasting impact on the environment?


Yes! – Lessons from the Coronavirus Can Help Us Overcome the Climate Crisis


Gizmodo – This Is What Climate Change Looks Like in an Era of Covid-19


Fortune – The oil sector is quickly running out of storage for its unprecedented surplus


NPR – Climate Change Push Fuels Split On Coronavirus Stimulus


Ensia – Opinion: Put Clean Energy at the Heart of Stimulus Plans to Counter the Coronavirus Crisis


NPR – Pandemic Delays Return of Arctic Researchers


E&E News – ‘We have never done this before.’ Inside N.Y.’s grid lockdown


NY Times – Australia’s Record Heat Means another Blow to Great Barrier Reef


CarbonBrief – Fossil fuel use not closely linked to longer life expectancy, study suggests


Utility Dive – How COVID-19 is impacting 5 state energy legislation efforts


ENN – Global Supply Chains as a Way to Curb Carbon Emissions


ENN – What Can We Learn From Covid-19 to Help With Climate Change?


Toxics/Mobile Sources

NPR – Trump Administration Weakens Auto Emissions Standards


NY Times – U.S. to Announce Rollback of Auto Pollution Rules, a Key Effort to Fight Climate Change


E&E News – Leaked draft: Trump emissions plan fails agency price test


E&E News – EPA eases gasoline blending requirements


NPR/ProPubilca – Plastic Wars: Industry Spent Millions Selling Recycling — To Sell More Plastic


NY Times – In Coronavirus, Industry Sees Chance to Undo Plastic Bag Bans


NPR – Builder of Controversial Keystone XL Pipeline Says It’s Moving Forward


NPR – Judge Orders Environmental Review of Controversial Dakota Access Pipeline


Indianz – Tribes score victory in long-running battle against Dakota Access Pipeline


Indoor Air Quality

Electrek – Pollution may make the coronavirus even worse – here’s how to protect yourself


Be sure to subscribe to EPA’s IAQ Bulletins

2020-04-01T16:37:41+00:00April 1st, 2020|TOP STORIES & HEADLINES|

TOP STORIES/HEADLINES: Week of March 23-27, 2020


NTAA welcomes Maranda Hamme, Environmental Manager for the Craig Tribal Association to the NTAA Executive Committee as the Alternate Alaska Representative! Maranda joins Ann Wyatt who is the Primary Alaska Representative on the NTAA EC and is the Environmental Planner for the Klawock Cooperative Association. Click here to learn about the NTAA Executive Committee.  


NTAA welcomes the newest member Tribes to the family of NTAA member Tribes: The Chickahominy Indian Tribe in Region 3 and The Muscogee (Creek) Nation in Region 6. With the addition of both these Tribes, NTAA’s membership now includes 151 member Tribes! Click here to learn more!


NTAA Releases a Policy Resource Kit on EPA’s Supplemental Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (SNPRM) for Strengthening Transparency in Regulatory Science

The NTAA has released this Fact Sheet, to help your Tribe in developing a response to EPA. Comments are due by April 17, 2020. NTAA is also holding an informational webinar for Tribes to better understand this proposal and ask questions on Tuesday, April 7, 2020 at 2pm ET. Register, view documents, and hear the audio for the informational webinar here. Stay tuned to the NTAA’s website for the complete PRK!


Health and Human Services Announces $80M to Support COVID-19 Response in Indian Country

The Department of Health and Human Services announced an $80 million spend plan for tribes, tribal organizations, and urban Indian organizations to support COVID-19 response efforts in Indian Country. Read the full release from HHS here.


NTAA and ITEP, in consultation with the 2020 NTFAQ Planning Committee, has determined that in the interest of public health and the well-being of our communities across the country, the 2020 National Tribal Forum on Air Quality will be cancelled. At this time, we are exploring options for rescheduling the event so that we can continue to deliver the high-quality experience you have come to expect from the NTFAQ. We are offering registration fee refunds for those who already submitted payment, and will be working closely with our project partners to communicate the cancellation, as well as plans for the future. If you have questions or comments, please contact



Ambient Air Quality/EPA/NTAA/Tribes

Indian Country Today – ‘We have a deal’ on emergency spending


ABC News – Tribes take measures to slow spread of new coronavirus


CNBC – Air pollution falls as coronavirus slows travel, but scientists warn of longer-term threat to climate change progress


The Hill – Advocacy groups push back on ‘business as usual’ at EPA during coronavirus


U.S. EPA – Message from OITA Assistant Administrator, Chad McIntosh, to Tribal Leaders and Tribal Environmental Director’s regarding COVID-19


Los Angeles Times – Does air pollution make you more susceptible to coronavirus? California won’t like the answer


Atmospheric and Oceanic Science Letters – Ammonia has been wrongly missing in portraying air pollution impacts


AP – Rules to reduce New Mexico methane emissions begin drafted


Indian Country Today – Indian Country’s COVID-19 syllabus


Indian Country Today – Dancing for the people (virtually)


NY Times – How the Coronavirus Crisis May Hinder Efforts to Fight Wildfires


National Association of Clean Air Agencies – Washington Update


Climate Change/Energy

Grist – The key ingredient to surviving both coronavirus and climate change: our shared sense of humanity


ABC3340 – Amid pandemic, US coal industry seeks lower taxes, royalties


Bloomberg Green – Coal Is Now the World’s Most Expensive Fossil Fuel


E&E News – U.N. shifts from climate change to coronavirus


Cronkite News – Lower carbon-capture costs could entice businesses to address climate change


Yes! Magazine – Why Coronavirus Is Humanity’s Wake-Up Call


CarbonBrief – Restoring soils could remove up to ‘5.5bn tonnes’ of greenhouse gases every year


ENN – Hidden Source of Carbon Found at the Arctic Coast


Toxics/Mobile Sources

NY Times – Traffic and Pollution Plummet as U.S. Cities Shut Down for Coronavirus


Huffpost – Airline Union Leader to Push For New Climate Rules amid Fight over Bailout


NY Times – Big Rigs Begin to Trade Diesel for Electric Motors


NPR – Louisiana’s Chemical Corridor Is Expanding. So Are Efforts to Stop It


EPA – EPA Extends Deadline to Apply for Community-Scale Air Toxics Monitoring Grants


Clean Technica – The Electric Car Cost Tipping Point


Indoor Air Quality

EU Today – The predicted “air pollution pandemic” includes an indoor threat


Malay Mail – Confinement: How to minimize air pollution inside your home


Be sure to subscribe to EPA’s IAQ Bulletins

2020-03-25T16:23:20+00:00March 25th, 2020|TOP STORIES & HEADLINES|


Our mission is to advance air quality management policies and programs, consistent with the needs, interests, and unique legal status of American Indian Tribes and Alaska Natives.