The attorneys general of 14 states sent a letter on Friday to Andrew Wheeler, acting administrator of the Environmental Protection Agency, requesting that the agency reverse its decision to suspend a regulation that limits the production of high-polluting diesel trucks. California Attorney General Xavier Becerra led the coalition.
The letter comes one week after the EPA announced—on then-EPA administrator Scott Pruitt's last day of work—that it would not enforce a 2016 regulation that limits the manufacture of "glider trucks," diesel freight trucks refurbished with older engines that pollute significantly more than newer engines. The announcement followed pressure from glider truck manufacturers, the New York Times reports.
The letter calls the EPA's action "an unlawful rule suspension masquerading as an exercise of enforcement discretion."
"Without acknowledging the increased risk of premature deaths and other public health and environmental harms the de facto suspension will cause," the letter states, "EPA contends that it will prevent economic harms to manufacturers," while failing to "consider the far greater economic consequences of the health impacts of increased glider sales." The letter notes that the EPA estimated those consequences to be between $300,000 and $1,100,000 for each glider truck.