NAM: GOP questions health benefits of EPA’s new ozone rule

The New Orleans (LA) Times-Picayune (6/18, Alpert) reports that Sen. Bill Cassidy (R-LA) and 22 other health professionals in the Republican Caucus have expressed doubt over the supposed health benefits of the EPA’s new surface ozone rule in a letter to EPA administrator Gina McCarthy. The letter questions four of the studies used to justify the new standards, saying that they “are not adequate and do not support a lower standard,” and says that public health should include economic concerns like reducing costly regulation. The letter cited NAM projections that the new regulation could cost businesses $140 billion per year to implement and cost 1.4 million jobs per year.

The Hill (6/18, Henry) notes the letter said the findings in the studies EPA used to justify the new rule “are again far too limited to be appropriately applied to the general U.S population, or, for that matter, to groups of sensitive individuals in the population.” The letter argues that “Public health should not be viewed in a vacuum, but rather considered holistically, mindful of the correlation between health and the economy.”

Eisenberg Testifies Before House Subcommittees On EPA Ozone Proposal. Manufacturing (6/17, Micetich) reported that NAM Vice President of Energy and Resources Policy Ross Eisenberg testified at a hearing before House subcommittees entitled “EPA’s Proposed Ozone Rule: Potential Impacts on Manufacturing,” during which “manufacturers, businesses and stakeholders expressed a growing fear” over the EPA’s proposed ozone regulations “would delay new construction, limiting economic opportunity and job growth.” According to Eisenberg, the regulation “is not a balanced policy” and “is not an achievable rule.” Eisenberg added that 66 percent of manufacturers surveyed said “they are unlikely to move forward with projects in ozone nonattainment areas” and pointed to the letters from people from all portions of law, government and business “who have sent letters to the EPA or the White House asking for the current standard to remain in place.”

NAM To Host Panel On Ozone Rule, Other Regulations. Politico (6/17, Schor) reported in its “Morning Energy” blog that the NAM plans to “host a panel” on the EPA’s proposed ozone standard and other regulatory issues at the US Conference of Mayors in San Francisco this coming weekend.