Ozone Regs: Crushing the Economy in Michigan

By February 7, 2008Energy

Rep. Fred Upton (R-MI) this week sent a letter to James Connaughton, Chairman of the Council on Environmental Quality, on the EPA’s proposed regulations that would ratchet down ozone emissions, or at least man-made ozone. Upton is ranking member of the Energy and Air Quality Subcommittee, House Energy and Commerce Committee, so his words carry weight.

[I] agree that we must adhere to responsible air quality standards to preserve public health. However, we must address pollution at the source. The new standards would unfairly penalize Michigan for pollution generated in Gary, Chicago and Milwaukee. The proposed sanctions would be a severe blow to Michigan’s economy, discouraging the business community from expanding or relocating in our great state.

Upton notes that the 2005 Energy Bill included language providing for a two-year demonstration project to examine the effect of transported ozone. The study was supposed to be done in early fall of 2007, but the results haven’t been reviewed or released. It doesn’t make sense to require counties to comply with stricter rules when there’s not a good understanding of what causes the localized ozone.

Upton concludes:

It is clear that the proposed standards would result in reduced economic opportunities, higher costs to businesses and consumers, more restrictions of business practices, and a lower quality of life for all Americans.

The full letter is here.

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