The American Petroleum Institute (API) argues that the Obama administration should keep the current ozone standards of 75 parts per billion. API Senior Director of Regulatory and Scientific Affairs Howard Feldman highlighted API's comments to Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) in a conference call on Monday.
Feldman said, “The facts are clear: the current standards protect our environment. Peer reviewed science confirms that the current standards are protecting public health. The nation’s air is getting cleaner, and air quality will continue to improve as we implement the existing standards.”
API points out that ground level ozone in the US declined by 18% between 2000 and 2013, according to EPA data. At a standard of 65 parts per billion, 45 out of the lower 48 states would have areas that could be out of compliance, according to API. At a standard of 60 parts per billion, 46 out of the lower 48 states could have areas out of compliance.
Lowering the standard to 60 ppb, which the EPA is taking comment on, could cost the economy $270 billion per year and place millions of jobs at risk, according to a report by NERA Economic Consulting.
“We question the wisdom and the motivation behind burdening our nation’s still recovering economy and the American consumer with more, costly regulations before the current regulations have been given time to work,” Feldman said. “This rule could be the costliest regulation ever imposed on the American public. A lower standard could, for little or no health benefit, significantly constraint our nation’s economy and eliminate thousands of jobs.”