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Environment

EPA Faces Budget Cuts Under House Bill

by Jessica Morrison
July 13, 2015 | APPEARED IN VOLUME 93, ISSUE 28

The House of Representatives was expected to pass a spending bill (H.R. 2822) late last week that would trim EPA’s budget by about 9%, or $718 million less than its current funding level. The legislation would stop EPA’s plan to regulate carbon emissions from new and existing power plants, halt its waters of the U.S. rule aimed at protecting wetlands and waterways, and set back an effort to tighten the air quality standard for ground-level ozone. The American Chemistry Council (ACC), an industry trade association, urged the House to pass the bill. “EPA’s plan makes little sense when ozone concentrations are falling, manufacturers are expanding, and the new production is cleaner and state-of-the-art,” ACC said. The White House has warned that President Barack Obama will not sign any spending bill that adheres to across-the-board budget cuts known as sequestration. The Senate Appropriations Committee passed a spending bill in June that would cut EPA’s budget by about $538.8 million below the current funding level for fiscal 2016.

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