Friday, June 12, 2015

EPA ozone regulations

EPA and Ozone regulations. 

Senate subcommittee hearing December 2014.
The Clean Air Act requires EPA to review NAAQS standards (national ambient air quality standards) for ozone and for 5 other pollutants every 5 years to ensure they protect public health.
The current 75 parts per billion ozone standard has been too high since the day it was finalized by the Bush Administration back in 2008. That decision by the Bush Administration was so out of line that the scientific advisory committee actually pushed back after the fact, wrote a very unusual letter to Administrator Johnston telling him that he had made a mistake and that the number could not be justified. Given the priorities of that administration the scientific advice was not reckoned with so that’s where the standard was set, and since then since then we have had false comfort that the air we breathe everyday is safe. The revised standard is a significant improvement; it is based on extensive scientific research, including over a thousand studies published since the 2008 standard. 

Industry claims that an ozone standard that protects health will devastate businesses and the economy. When you look at history over and over again those claims have been shown to be exaggerated and usually the contrary is true. In terms of cost and benefits, the benefits of this rule in health and other areas are three time the costs. EPA analysis show that Health benefits translate into economic benefits, excluding California (which already complies), would be 4 billion to 23 billion higher than the costs in 2025. 


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