Obama administration backs off stricter air standards

In a statement released last Friday, President Obama announced that he has asked U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) administrator Lisa Jackson, to withdraw the proposed Ozone National Ambient Air Quality Standards. The draft legislation would have tightened restrictions on ozone emissions, thus creating more unnecessary red-tape for the business community.

In a press release, the President commented that halting the latest effort by the EPA is part of his plan to reduce regulatory burdens and market uncertainty as the economy continues its path to recovery. He also expressed concern that the implementation of the new ozone standard would have quickly become outdated.

“Work is already underway to update a 2006 review of the science that will result in the reconsideration of the ozone standard in 2013. Ultimately, I did not support asking state and local governments to begin implementing a new standard that will soon be reconsidered.”

The Chamber sees this as a temporary reprieve for businesses in the Commonwealth, many of which have been in constant battle with the EPA for the last few years. The regulations would have negatively impacted electricity prices in the state due to the cost of compliance for Kentucky’s utility companies.

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