EPA sets controversial new limits on smog
January 8, 2010
(Chattahbox) – With the new EPA standards under the Obama administration, stricter air quality standards will require a lower overall concentration of ozone in the air at any given time, from 75 ppb to 60 or 70 parts per billion. In order to achieve this goal, new pollution restrictions are being put into place that will require state and local officials to meet new federal requirements. These new air quality standards are controversial, as the small reduction in ozone could have little to no effect on health, and has been claimed as a politically motivated change rather than one protecting individuals’ health. This has been challenged by the EPA: “Smog in the air we breath poses a very serious health threat, especially to children and individuals suffering from asthma and lung disease.” It is estimated by the EPA, it will cost $19-90 billion to implement the ozone reduction plan and that it will provide health benefits of $13-100 billion. Setting requirements can be much easier than meeting them. Many industries will have to pay more for pollution control in an already troubled economy, which means the money spent on pollution control by industries cannot be spent on new jobs. Is the legislation really worth the time and effort? The public has 60 days to comment before the new guidelines become final.
See the Washington Post for more.