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  • Writer's pictureAIM Team

BREAKING NEWS: Manufacturers respond to expanded EPA Ozone Standard

Following today’s early morning announcement from the EPA to tighten the current ozone standards, NAM President and CEO Jay Timmons released the following statement:

“Manufacturers in the United States are working hard for a manufacturing comeback, attempting to utilize America’s unmatched energy resources, building hundreds of billions of dollars’ worth of new facilities across the country. These are the facilities that make advanced cars and trucks, steel pipelines, fertilizer to grow our crops and roofing and insulation that keep our energy bills down.”

“This new ozone regulation threatens to be the most expensive ever imposed on industry in America and could jeopardize recent progress in manufacturing by placing massive new costs on manufacturers and closing off counties and states to new business by blocking projects at the permitting stage. This new standard comes at the same time dozens of other new EPA regulations are being imposed that collectively place increased costs, burdens and delays on manufacturers, threaten our international competitiveness and make it nearly impossible to grow jobs.”

“Before the Obama Administration moves the goalposts with yet another set of requirements that will make it more difficult for manufacturers across the country, they need to allow existing ozone standards to be implemented and give time to American businesses to meet those already stringent and onerous requirements.”

Timmons, Eisenberg Discuss Impact Of Ozone, Other Regulations On Manufacturers. Preceding the EPA’s announcement, NAM President and CEO Jay Timmons and Vice President of Energy and Resources Policy Ross Eisenberg discussed the effect of existing federal regulations on US manufacturers.

Appearing on Fox News’ America’s Newsroom with Bill Hemmer & Martha MacCallum (11/25) on Tuesday, Timmons said: “Right now there are over $2 trillion of regulations that are impacting businesses of all sizes in all sectors all across the country.” More of his interview with reporter Shannon Bream was shown later during Fox News’ Special Report with Bret Baier(11/25), with the NAM chief saying: “I think the regulatory environment in this country is the No. 1 competitive threat for American businesses in a very, very competitive global economy. … The average compliance cost for a manufacturer is about $20,000 per employee per year. If you’re a small manufacturer, that cost goes up to $35,000 per employee per year.”

Politico (11/26, Martinson) reports on the EPA’s newly proposed lower ozone-emission limit, noting the NAM’s July study that said, “This would be the most expensive regulation ever imposed on the American public.” The story quotes Eisenberg as saying that lowering the ozone cap to a level favored by environmental groups would be “insane.” In terms of politics, he said, “I think the case can be made that it’s not worth the trouble.” Eisenberg added that communities already have spent a lot to reduce emissions from factories and power plants, “and here they’re almost in the promised land and EPA’s going to move the chains again.”

Bloomberg News (11/26, Drajem), noting that “industry” would prefer to keep the EPA standard at the current level of 75 parts per billion, quotes Eisenberg as saying: “This is not cheap, because we’ve done a lot already. We are at a point where there is not a lot of low-hanging fruit.”

The National Journal (11/26, Subscription Publication) quotes Eisenberg as saying the new rules would burden manufacturers. “There are some pretty significant cuts that will have to come largely from manufacturers,” the NAM official said, “so we say let’s just make those until we talk about moving the chains. Short of shutting down, you just run out of options.”

The Wall Street Journal (11/26, A4, Harder, Subscription Publication) notes that industry groups including the NAM have urged the Obama Administration against changing the ozone standard. The EPA is issuing its proposed caps before a court-ordered deadline of Dec. 1, along with a timeline for the agency to make a final ruling by October 2015, the Journal notes.

The Hill (11/25, Cama) says the NAM study “concluded that lowering the standard to 60 ppb could foist ‘$270 billion a year’ in costs onto the economy.”

A Reuters (11/26, Volcovici) piece notes that the NAM and other industry groups have been preparing for a standard as low as 60 ppb, which the NAM estimates could cost $270 billion a year.

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