Energy & Environment

269 business groups ask Obama to scuttle ozone rule

Representatives of 269 business groups are asking President Obama to stop his administration from moving forward on its ozone pollution rule.

The effort, organized by the National Association of Manufacturers (NAM), includes an array of national, state and local business groups in each state and across numerous industries.

{mosads}They’re hoping that Obama will stop the Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) attempt to reduce the allowable ozone pollution level to between 65 and 70 parts per billion, from the current 75 parts per billion.

“A stricter ozone standard could close off communities across the nation to new jobs and economic growth, requiring reductions to near-background levels in many places,” the groups wrote in a letter Wednesday to Obama.

“We are bound by the limits of technological feasibility, and this regulation mandates controls that even the EPA admits are unknown.”

They argue that environmental rules have significantly improved air pollution already, and call for “balanced” policies that don’t hurt businesses.

“The need for balanced government policies and reasonable flexibilities has never been greater, and no single regulation threatens to disrupt this balance more than EPA’s ozone rule,” they wrote.

It is the latest effort by NAM and others to stop the rule. A NAM-commissioned study said the rule would cost $1.1 trillion, making it the most expensive regulation ever. The EPA disagrees, saying it would cost up to $16.6 billion but bring benefits as high as $38 billion.

Ozone, which is created by certain pollutants from the burning of fossil fuels, has been linked to respiratory ailments. But the rule could spur states to restrict various activities that contribute to the pollution, including manufacturing.

The EPA is under a court order to make the rule final by Oct. 1.

Tags Air pollution Environmental Protection Agency National Association of Manufacturers Ozone

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