With the federal government shutdown in its second day, the Environmental Protection Agency is operating without 94 percent of its staff. As a result, according to the Guardian, air- and water-quality inspections have ground to a halt — raising potential public-health concerns.
"No one is going to be out inspecting water discharges or wetlands," said John O'Grady, a union representative at EPA's regional office in Chicago. "Nobody is going to be out inspecting wastewater-treatment plants, drinking-water treatment plants, or landfills — nothing. None of that is going to be done. The employees are absolutely devastated."