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News Release | Environment Texas and Environmental Integrity Project

Texas fails to penalize 97 percent of illegal air pollution releases

Texas imposed penalties on less than 3 percent of illegal air pollution releases during industrial malfunctions and maintenance from 2011 through 2016, even though these incidents emitted more than 500 million pounds of pollutants, according to an analysis of state records by the Environmental Integrity Project and Environment Texas. A new report, “Breakdowns in Enforcement,” ranks the worst illegal air pollution events from oil refineries, chemical plants and other industrial facilities across Texas in 2016. The report concludes that the infrequency and small size of the state’s fines (averaging just three pennies per pound for pollution) are a major problem, because the lack of enforcement means that the owners are less likely to invest money to upgrade and repair known problems.

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News Release | Environment Texas

President Trump to pull out of Paris Climate Accord

President Trump has got it exactly backwards: there’s no sound economy in our future without a healthy planet.  If national leadership chooses to ignore that reality, then local governments, businesses and institutions must step in to fill the leadership void to show the world that Americans will do our part to address the climate crisis.

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Headline

Online tool to track air pollution in Texas debuts

Air pollution happens every day in Houston. Sometimes, that pollution is well within permit limits, considered safe by state environmental regulators, and sometimes, it's not. So how do Houston residents who care about air quality tell the difference? Several environmental groups have recently debuted a handy new tool that notifies people when a Texas industry anticipates releasing air pollution that exceeds permitted limits.

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News Release | Environment Texas Research and Policy Center

UT Faculty Urge University Lands to Reduce Methane Pollution

AUSTIN – Faculty of the University of Texas System released a letter today urging UT Chancellor McRaven to reduce the climate-damaging methane emissions occurring at oil and gas facilities on land managed by the UT System. The letter has more than 177 faculty signatures and ran as an ad in the Wednesday edition of UT Austin’s student newspaper, The Daily Texan. “UT wants us to be leaders for our students,” said David Matiella of UT San Antonio’s Department of Architecture. The professors who signed onto this letter want UT to step up and be a leader on managing our public lands.”

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Blog Post

2016 air pollution data for Texas | Luke Metzger

Today we released Our Health at Risk: Why Are Millions of Americans Still Breathing Unhealthy Air?, which examines air pollution data for 2015. We also obtained preliminary data from the EPA for 2016 (the data will officially be considered final on May 1, but we expect few if any changes). So how did Texas metro areas stack up? In general, air pollution improved in Texas in 2016, with a few exceptions. There were more smoggy days in Houston and more sooty days in El Paso, Brownsville and McAllen (increases italicized below).

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