Energy and Environment Regulatory Tracker: EV mandates, EPA confuses science and policy, and more!

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Keeping track of the most important energy and environmental federal rules can be difficult. The following lists some important proposed rules with open comment periods:
Scientific Integrity Policy Draft for Public Comment
Environmental Protection Agency (EPA)
Comment deadline: February 23, 2024
Quick take: The EPA is proposing a scientific integrity document that conflates policy and science, promotes diversity, equity, and inclusion policies (DEI), and doesn’t discuss or even expressly reference the Information Quality Act once within the text of the document. 
Additional helpful resources: Draft Policy  EPA Scientific Integrity Page

National Wildlife Refuge System; Biological Integrity, Diversity, and Environmental Health
Fish and Wildlife Service
Comment deadline: March 4, 2024
Quick take: This is a rule intended to use climate change to justify new policies affecting refuges. The proposed rule encourages the “establishment of wildlife corridors to facilitate adaptation to climate change and other stressors.”

California State Motor Vehicle Pollution Control Standards; Advanced Clean Cars II Regulations; Request for Waiver of Preemption; Opportunity for Public Hearing and Public Comment
Comment deadline: February 27, 2024
Quick take: This notice provides the public an opportunity to comment on California’s waiver request to allow it to move forward with its new regulations prohibiting the sale of new internal combustion engine passenger cars, trucks, and SUVs by 2035. This EV mandate goes much further than what California is doing. Many states have adopted all or part of California’s mandate. If the EPA doesn’t grant the waiver, this would put an end (for now) to state efforts to limit the ability of Americans to choose what kind of cars they want to drive.
Helpful Resources: California FAQ Document

Commission Guidance Regarding the Listing of Voluntary Carbon Credit Derivative Contracts; Request for Comment
Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC)
Comment deadline:
February 16, 2024
Quick take:
This CFTC guidance would establish standards for voluntary carbon credit markets. In a recent speech, CFTC Chairman Rostin Behnam said that the guidance is “identified as one of the most important developments for the carbon industry, this is the first proposed guidance on standards applicable to exchanges listing products aimed at providing tools to manage risk, promote price discovery, and help channel capital in support of decarbonization efforts.” 

This guidance is yet another effort to have the government play a role in making “voluntary” programs seem legitimate and to exist in the first place. Without the government intervention, such a market likely will not become a reality.