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API voices concerns over EPA’s proposal to tighten ozone standards

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Hydrocarbon Engineering,

API is concerned that the Obama administration is rushing potentially the most expensive regulation in history through a shortened review process, according to Howard Feldman, API Senior Director of Regulatory and Scientific Affairs.

“We are surprised the administration is limiting interagency review of what could be the most expensive regulation ever,” Feldman said, after the rule went to the White House for final review on Friday. “EPA’s proposal to tighten the ozone standards would fall on top of current limits that are already improving air quality. The nation’s air is getting cleaner, and air quality will continue to improve as we implement the existing standards. We urge the administration to allow the current standards to continue working.” Ground level ozone in the US declined by 18% between 2000 and 2013, according to EPA data.

The administration is just now beginning final review of the rule only one month before a court ordered due date of 1 October, according to Feldman. The process normally takes 60 to 90 days.

“EPA should listen to the many public officials who have expressed concern with this regulatory effort,” Feldman said. “As proposed, the new standards would impose unachievable emission reduction requirements on virtually every part of the nation, including rural and undeveloped areas. Even pristine areas with no industrial activity such as national parks could be out of attainment. Operating under such stringent requirements could stifle new investment and threaten jobs.”

The proposed ozone regulation could cost US$270 billion/y and place millions of jobs at risk, according to an NERA economic analysis.

Adapted from press release by Rosalie Starling

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