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API urges administration to keep existing ozone standard

Carlton Carroll | 202.682.8114 |

WASHINGTON, March 16, 2015 – The administration should keep the current ozone standards of 75 parts per billion, which are not only the strictest standards ever imposed; they have yet to be fully implemented, API Senior Director of Regulatory and Scientific Affairs Howard Feldman told reporters in a conference call Monday to preview API’s comments to EPA.

“The facts are clear: the current standards protect our environment,” Feldman said. “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.”

Ground level ozone in the U.S. declined by 18 percent 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.”

API is the only national trade association representing all facets of the oil and natural gas industry, which supports 9.8 million U.S. jobs and 8 percent of the U.S. economy. API’s more than 625 members include large integrated companies, as well as exploration and production, refining, marketing, pipeline, and marine businesses, and service and supply firms. They provide most of the nation’s energy and are backed by a growing grassroots movement of more than 25 million Americans.
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