Heritage: Ozone Rules Costly, Counterproductive

By February 26, 2008Energy

From Nick Loris and Ben Lieberman at the Heritage Foundation, “EPA Should Not Increase the Ozone Regulation Burden“:

In June 2007, the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) proposed a more stringent revision of the National Ambient Air Quality Standards (NAAQS) for ground-level ozone, the primary component of smog. Currently, the eight-hour ozone standard set by the EPA is 84 parts per billion (ppb). The new proposal would lower this to 75ppb or 70ppb.

The signature on the final ruling is expected in March, and the rule would go into effect 60 days after publication in the Federal Register. The EPA would require each state to designate attainment and non-attainment areas and to have a detailed State Implementation Plan outlining how to reduce air pollution.

The revisions purportedly aim to strengthen public health safety for asthmatics, children, and the elderly and to limit environmental damage to vegetation and ecosystems.[1] However, studies have proven that the current standard is stringent enough and that implementing a tighter standard would be extremely costly and could actually increase some health risks. Many counties would be forced to comply with new requirements that offer only marginal health benefits at best. The EPA should withdraw its proposal.

The piece includes a clear explanation of how the EPA has engaged in unsound science and faulty extrapolation.

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