An environmental protection agency is weighing a controversial proposal that would allow states to exempt their own sports teams from some regulations on mercury pollution.
The proposal, which is being considered by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, would allow athletes to keep using their own equipment, as long as they pay a “substantial” fine for that use.
In a statement Friday, the EPA said the proposal does not change existing federal environmental laws and would not prevent the EPA from implementing rules to address the issue.
The agency said the rule would not affect the authority of state or local governments to enforce the Clean Water Act, which regulates pollution of waterways and land.
The agency did not address a question about whether the proposal would affect states that have adopted other mercury-control measures.
It also did not provide a timeline for the rule’s implementation.
The EPA is expected to finalize the rule sometime next month.
The agency has also issued a preliminary draft of a proposal to help states meet their goals for reducing mercury pollution and the pollution of the Chesapeake Bay.
The Mercury and Air Toxics Control Act requires states to reduce mercury pollution by up to 25 percent by 2020.
But it also says they must take action to protect aquatic ecosystems and public health.
The Trump administration, which has proposed a slate of sweeping environmental and health measures, has pushed to roll back or repeal environmental and environmental protection regulations.