Proposed Obama ozone tax: gut punch
November 26, 2014
U.S. Senator John Thune (R-South Dakota) criticized a proposed regulation from the Obama Environmental Protection Agency to expand costly ground-level ozone regulations across the country:
"It's disappointing, though not surprising, that the Obama administration would unveil what could be the most expensive regulation in history on the eve of the Thanksgiving holiday. With nearly 9 million Americans still struggling to find work and make ends meet, the last thing the president should be proposing is a regulation that will have a devastating impact on jobs and energy prices for those who can afford it the least.
"Major metropolitan areas in states like California and New York – where smog is the worst – cannot meet the existing standard even after years of non-compliance. We should be targeting these problem areas before devastating rural economies in states with cleaner air. I will continue to look for ways to move my legislation, the CASE Act, to block the EPA's absurd regulation and make sure we first focus on the most problematic levels of smog in populated areas."
Thune's bipartisan, bicameral CASE Act, S.2833, would block the EPA from lowering the National Ambient Air Quality Standards for ground-level ozone below 75 ppb until 85 percent of the current non-attainment counties achieve compliance with the existing standard. It would also require the EPA to consider the costs and feasibility of the lower standard, which the EPA currently does not consider. Finally, the bill would prohibit the EPA from using unreliable modeling to expand non-attainment areas to rural counties that otherwise would not be impacted by the expensive regulation.