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Reintroduction of Ozone Bill Requiring EPA to Balance Clean Air with Economic Stability

WASHINGTON, D.C. – Rep. Pete Olson (R-TX) and Rep. Bob Latta (R-OH) today reintroduced bipartisan legislation that would require the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to include feasibility and economic impacts when issuing major rules. EPA has indicated they intend to propose a National Ambient Air Quality Standard (NAAQS) for ozone, from the current level of 75 parts per billion (PPB) down to 70-65 PPB. These levels are so low that most of America will be out of compliance. The Clean Air, Strong Economies (CASE) Act, would require EPA to protect health AND consider feasibility when issuing rules under the Clean Air Act.

“America has made important gains in air quality over the last 30 years and will continue down this path,” Rep. Olson said. “But this new level puts most of America out of compliance, putting jobs and economic development at risk. Our bipartisan bill will update the Clean Air Act to allow EPA to consider economic costs when issuing rules, something they are currently not allowed to do. It would bring the proper balance to improving air quality, while doing so with achievable technology and ensuring the process does the least harm to our economy.”

“We all want clean air and a healthy environment,” said Rep. Latta. “When proceeding with new regulations, they must be achievable and without significant harm to our economy. Manufacturers should not be faced with the choice of complying with EPA regulations or staying in business. Not only would these new standards put much of America out of compliance, but they also fail to take into account the $270 billion and millions of jobs that would be lost nationwide. The CASE Act would ensure we continue to improve our air quality, while also factoring in the feasibility of compliance and economic harm.”

“‘Nonattainment’ designations under the ozone NAAQS are often viewed as devastating for economic and business development in an area because they lead to permitting delays, restrictions on expansion, increased costs to industry, and adverse impacts on transportation planning. Consequently – as called for by the CASE Act – it is imperative that the EPA consider all relevant factors, use the best scientific data, and be completely transparent in its review and setting of any ozone standard. We applaud Representatives Olson and Latta’s introduction of the CASE Act, which is an important piece of legislation for the business community, as well as states and localities working to grow their economies and bring new jobs to their areas,” said Bill Kovacs of the U.S. Chamber of Commerce.

Original cosponsors of the CASE Act include: Henry Cuellar (D-TX), Ann Kirkpatrick (D-AZ), John Shimkus (R-IL), David McKinley (R-WV), Scott Tipton (R-CO), Mike Pompeo (R-KS), Andy Barr (R-KY), Mike Kelly (R-PA), Bill Johnson (R-OH), Tom McClintock (R-CA), Paul Gosar (R-AZ), Bill Flores (R-TX), Gus Bilirakis (R-FL), Billy Long (R-MO), Lamar Smith (R-TX), Jason Smith (R-MO), Randy Hultgren (R-IL), Jeb Hensarling (R-TX), Brian Babin (R-TX), Jim Bridenstine (R-OK), Rod Blum (R-IA), John Duncan (R-TN), Walter Jones (R-NC), and Ted Yoho (R-FL).

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