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Environment

EPA Delays Costly Boiler Regulations

by Glenn Hess
May 23, 2011 | APPEARED IN VOLUME 89, ISSUE 21

EPA is indefinitely delaying new rules that would require manufacturers to comply with tighter emissions standards and regulatory requirements for more than 13,000 industrial boilers and process heaters. The agency issued the regulations under court order in February. But now EPA says it will seek additional public feedback and gather more information before the rules, designed to reduce public exposure to harmful airborne substances such as mercury and arsenic, are finalized. Industry groups and Republicans in Congress have sharply criticized the rules, charging they would kill jobs. The agency estimates that complying with the rules would cost industry about $2.1 billion a year. “The stay will help ensure that U.S. manufacturers and small businesses do not spend millions, if not billions of dollars, to comply with rules that are still under EPA review,” says Calvin M. Dooley, president and CEO of the American Chemistry Council, a trade association. EPA says that further review of the rules’ costs and benefits “is consistent with” a January executive order by President Barack Obama that directed federal agencies to “avoid excessive, inconsistent, and redundant regulation.”

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