Government agencies are what we make them be. Anyone who watched the Tennessee State combined hearing on the TVA ash-valanche would have been astounded to see the main line of questioning from our elected officials: "Why didn't TDEC regulations prevent this?"
TDEC is a state agency charged with enforcing the regulations passed by the State Legislature using the budget that the state Legislature gives it. You want Tennessee's environment to be healthy? Tell Dennis Ferguson and Ken Yager...Well, Ferguson anyway. Ken is bought and paid for.
This same situation holds true at the Federal level. We get the EPA that we demand...