As the economy fails to recover, the over regulation of the Environmental Protection Agency has been front and center in economic debates. Why? EPA regulations cost businesses billions of dollars per year to comply, killing jobs and creating more red tape that prevents business expansion. This year alone, new proposed EPA regulations add up to over a trillion dollars in new costs.
EPA has proposed to tighten the screws on American businesses and households by reducing acceptable ozone levels. The proposal could render up to 96 percent of U.S. counties noncompliant, and by some estimates would impose economic damages exceeding $1 trillion. There is no compelling health reason to foist such draconian regulatory changes on the fragile U.S. economy. The proposed regulations amount to serious costs with negligible benefits.
EPA regulates ground-level ozone levels under the Clean Air Act. The current primary regulatory standard for ozone is 0.075 parts per million (ppm), established in 2008. (Implementation of the 0.075 ppm standard was suspended in 2009 pending further study.) EPA reviews its air quality regulations every five years, so normally EPA would review the ozone standards in 2013. Yet for some reason, the Obama administration has decided that it needs to raise energy and regulatory costs on U.S. businesses right now, two years ahead of schedule.
But as we've seen, the Obama Administration thinks math is hard and clearly the head of the EPA Lisa Jackson, doesn't understand the negative economic impact her out of control department. Instead, she is calling Republicans liars and saying they just want dirty air in the lungs of babies.
The nation's top environmental regulator delivered a blunt message this afternoon to students, professors and others at Duke University: Republicans are bad for the nation's health.
According to EPA Administrator Lisa Jackson, conservatives and Republicans in Washington are spreading disinformation in a bid to roll back this country's environmental protections and to hobble the agency.
The chief concern among conservatives is that EPA regulations stall economic growth and kill jobs. Jackson said the opposite is true: New regulations provide tens of thousands of jobs to electricians, engineers and steelworkers who retrofit old technology to comply with stricter standards.
The EPA position, she said, is non-partisan and rooted in science: The public health benefits of environmental regulation outweigh its cost. The EPA's critics are peddling the contrary: lies and propaganda, Jackson told about 550 in attendance at the Reynolds Theater in the Bryan University Center.
Katie Pavlich is the Editor at Townhall.com. Follow her on Twitter @katiepavlich. She is a New York Times Best Selling author. Her latest book Assault and Flattery: The Truth About the Left and Their War on Women, was published on July 8, 2014.