Issue Date: May 29, 2017
What people are saying about EPA regulations
EPA received more than 150,000 public comments about existing regulations by May 15. The comments, which largely opposed changes to the agency’s regulations, came from individual scientists and engineers as well as business owners and officials from the chemical industry.
Here are excerpts, which were edited for length and clarity.—JESSICA MORRISON
It appears that our government doesn’t remember the environmental disasters that triggered today’s environmental regulations. The Clean Water Act, the Toxic Substances Control Act, RCRA [the federal waste control law, the Resource Conservation & Recovery Act], air pollution regulations, etc., were all put in place due to public pressure from environmental disasters. I work in industry, and while regulations are a pain to deal with and cost money to comply with, there is no monetary value for human health and the health of our environment.
Marc Kenney, senior project engineer, River City Consultants, Grand Junction, Colo.
New products by Colonial Chemical, even if they are noticeably safer and more environmentally friendly than traditional chemicals, take far too long to receive EPA approval. In the old regulations, new substances were reviewed within 90 days. We believe this review time frame should be reinstated. We are in support of regulatory reform, but we believe, with a few changes, the regulation can be improved without stifling the innovation of new, safer chemicals.
Jennifer Palmer, regulatory manager, Colonial Chemical, South Pittsburg, Tenn.
I am the daughter of a former Pennsylvania coal miner. I am also a scientist and an active atmospheric chemist who has enjoyed relatively clean air in an era after the Clean Air Act was enacted. I am gravely concerned that rolling back the Clean Power Plan will cause devastating impacts to our environment and human health.
Amanda Grannas, professor of chemistry, Villanova University, Villanova, Pa.
One of the order’s criteria is whether costs outweigh benefits. I speak as an engineer with over 20 years in the chemical industry. Companies will figure out cost-effective ways to respond to regulations, and companies that provide products and services for pollution control also create jobs. But no company will voluntarily cut pollution if not required to and if its competition is not doing so.
Patricia Selby, private citizen, Grosse Ile, Mich.
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