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Mon Sep 20, 2021, 01:52 PM

At Colorado's tight-lipped air pollution agency, a 'culture of fear' prevails

During the Front Range’s smoggiest summer in over a decade, its embattled air-quality watchdog has gone quiet. Ex-employees say they’re not surprised.

By: Chase Woodruff - Monday September 20, 2021 5:00 am

Few Coloradans know the Air Pollution Control Division by name, but every time they take a breath of Rocky Mountain air, they’re impacted by the decisions it makes.

A branch of the state health department with a staff of about 200, the APCD is tasked with overseeing Colorado air-quality policy and, increasingly, with leading many of its efforts to transition to clean energy and battle climate change.

It’s important work that provokes strong opinions and sharp disagreements. Within the last year, the APCD has been sued by multiple environmental groups that accuse it of failing to implement critical climate legislation. Several of its own employees have filed a formal whistleblower complaint that has prompted both state and federal investigations. In July, it abruptly withdrew a pending transportation-emissions rule in a procedural maneuver that state lawyers said was unprecedented. As the agency regulating Front Range air quality, it faces an imminent federal downgrade reclassifying the region as a “severe” violator of the Clean Air Act.

All of this has unfolded as Colorado has experienced its smoggiest summer in more than a decade.

https://coloradonewsline.com/2021/09/20/colorados-air-pollution-agency-culture-fear/


( No matter how you look at it, the entire planet is in deep trouble. )

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