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EPA Administrator Scott Pruitt at the White House. Photo: Pablo Martinez Monsivais / AP

The Environmental Protection Agency issued a memorandum Monday to officially end a practice called "sue-and-settle," where the agency issues rules in response to lawsuits from environmental groups, per Bloomberg. The practice, which led to the Clean Power Plan during the Obama administration, was blasted by EPA Administrator Scott Pruitt as "regulation through litigation" that bypassed federal rule making processes.

Why it matters: Environmentalists are set to ramp up their lawsuits against President Trump's EPA as it unwinds the numerous regulations his predecessor issued. This change could increase the agency's litigation costs if it chooses to fight protracted court battles with environmental groups.

Why it won't matter forever: This memorandum has no legally binding impact, so the next president and his or her EPA administrator can choose to not follow it if they so chose.

Go deeper

29 mins ago - World

Netanyahu and Israel reluctantly adjust to a post-Trump Washington

Netanyahu (R) and Biden in 2010. Photo: Avi Ohayon/GPO via Getty

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and his close aides are very nervous about the transition to a new U.S. administration after a four-year honeymoon with Donald Trump. One Israeli official told me it felt like going through detox.

What he's saying: Netanyahu congratulated Biden minutes after he was sworn in, saying in a statement that he looked forward to working together to "continue expanding peace between Israel and the Arab world and to confront common challenges, chief among them the threat posed by Iran."

Updated 1 hour ago - Politics & Policy

Coronavirus dashboard

Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios

  1. State of play: New coronavirus cases down, but more bad news ahead.
  2. Politics: Biden set to immediately ramp up federal pandemic response with 10 executive actions — Scoop: Joe Biden's COVID-19 bubble.
  3. World: Biden will order U.S. to rejoin World Health OrganizationBiden to bring U.S. into global COVAX initiative for equitable vaccine access.
  4. Vaccine: Amazon offers to help Biden administration with COVID vaccine efforts.
Dion Rabouin, author of Markets
3 hours ago - Economy & Business

First glimpse of the Biden market

Photo: Jonathan Ernst-Pool/Getty Images

Investors made clear what companies they think will be winners and which will be losers in President Joe Biden's economy on Wednesday, selling out of gun makers, pot purveyors, private prison operators and payday lenders, and buying up gambling, gaming, beer stocks and Big Tech.

What happened: Private prison operator CoreCivic and private prison REIT Geo fell by 7.8% and 4.1%, respectively, while marijuana ETF MJ dropped 2% and payday lenders World Acceptance and EZCorp each fell by more than 1%.