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Energy Tomorrow Blog

ozone-standards  epa34  regulation  air-quality  economic-impacts  job-losses 

Mark Green

Mark Green
Posted February 3, 2015

Politico reports (subscription required) that the White House Office of Management and Budget on Friday finished review of EPA’s final rule to set state implementation plan requirements for the agency’s 2008 ozone standards.

Here’s the significance of that piece of wonky news: Even before EPA has finished telling the states how to implement the 2008 ozone standards, the agency already is well into setting new, potentially stricter standards. Regulation for regulation sake? It would be hard to find a better illustration.

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ozone-standards  air-quality  economic-impacts  job-losses  epa-regulation  policy 

Mark Green

Mark Green
Posted January 29, 2015

With EPA opening public hearings (subscription required) on its proposed new ground-level ozone standards, it’s important that we not let some key facts get lost in the wave of comments and anecdotes that results when there’s an open microphone available.

At issue is EPA’s plan to make more restrictive the National Ambient Air Quality Standard for ozone, from the current 75 parts per billion (ppb) to between 65 and 70 ppb. The agency is collecting input until mid-March before finalizing the rule this fall.

We’ve made the case before that the existing standards are working, that our air is getting cleaner and will continue to do so with the current rule. In short, there’s no good reason to make the standards more stringent. That’s what the science shows, as experts detailed at EPA’s hearing in Washington, D.C. (here and here). Indeed, EPA’s own data shows that ozone levels have fallen 33 percent since 1980, including 18 percent since 2000.

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ozone-pollution-standard  epa-regulation  economic-impacts  air-quality 

Mark Green

Mark Green
Posted November 25, 2014

Experts believe EPA soon will issue its proposal for the five-year review of Ozone National Ambient Air Quality Standards, perhaps as early as this week. Some important points to consider as the agency prepares what could be the costliest regulation ever imposed on Americans:

First, our air is getting cleaner under the current 75 parts per billion (ppb) standards set in 2008. EPA reports that national average ozone levels have fallen 33 percent since 1980 – including 18 percent since 2000.

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ozone-standards  epa34  economic-growth  air-quality 

Mark Green

Mark Green
Posted November 19, 2014

A couple of data points to remember with EPA poised to propose new, lower ground-level ozone standards, perhaps as soon as next month:

Air quality is and has been improving under the current, 75 parts per billion (ppb) standards, which are still being implemented across the country. Meanwhile, EPA reports national average ozone levels have fallen 33 percent since 1980 and 18 percent since 2000.

Against that backdrop, EPA staff reportedly is recommending a new primary ozone standard of between 60 and 70 ppb, which could put 94 percent of the country out of compliance – potentially stunting job creation and economic growth for little, if any, health benefit.

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air-quality  e1534  renewable-fuel-standard  epa34  greenhouse-gas-emissions 

Mark Green

Mark Green
Posted September 12, 2014

One of the oft-repeated claims of ethanol producers is that higher-ethanol blend fuels like E15 are better for air quality than the E10 gasoline that’s the staple of the U.S. fuel supply. Short response: No. And while we’ve addressed the ethanol/air quality claim recently here and here, spurious assertions often have more lives than Lulu, my daughter’s cat. So let’s look at the facts and credible research again.

We’ll underscore “facts and credible research,” because an advocacy group is promoting a study on ethanol, air quality and potential cancer risks that isn’t an original study at all. Rather, it’s an overly simplistic exercise in data aggregation that ignores the confounding effects of different test procedures, laboratories and fuel properties. In other words, it’s a crummy analysis that would send real scientists running in the other way.

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air-quality  oil-sands  exports  infrastructure 

Mark Green

Mark Green
Posted June 3, 2014

Reuters: Rising U.S. imports of crude oil from Canada's oil sands have not increased greenhouse gas emissions from the country's oil refineries because they have been offset by refining of cleaner domestic crudes, a report from a private sector think tank said on Monday.

The report, from industry consultants IHS CERA, comes as the Obama administration moves to cut greenhouse gas emissions from the U.S. power sector by 30 percent from 2005 levels by 2030, under new rules aimed at reducing America's longstanding reliance on burning coal to generate electricity.

The oil sands sector has faced frequent criticism from environmentalists concerned about greenhouse gas emissions. U.S. imports of carbon-rich Canadian oil-sands crudes grew by 900,000 barrels per day to more than 2 million bpd between 2005 and 2012, according to the IHS CERA report.

It said they did not result in higher greenhouse-gas intensity from the energy sector, however, as other crudes imported from abroad were supplanted by so-called tight oil from domestic shale-oil deposits.

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air-quality  diesel  emissions  energy-policy  environmental-protection-agency  fuel  gasoline  refinery  ulsd  vehicle  highway-travel  oil-industry-tax-rate  truck  ultra-low-sulfur-diesel20170719t150139 

Jane Van Ryan

Jane Van Ryan
Posted November 23, 2010

In today's episode, I interview Patrick Kelly, API's policy advisor for downstream fuels issues, about the completion of the transition from low sulfur diesel to Ultra-Low Sulfur Diesel (ULSD) fuel for highway travel.

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air-quality  energy-policy  epa34  air-pollution  ozone-standards 

Jane Van Ryan

Jane Van Ryan
Posted October 20, 2010

Whenever the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) issues new regulations, it usually includes information about the impact on human health. 

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air-quality  biodiesel  biofuels  department-of-energy  domestic-energy  energy-policy  fuel-blends  heating-oil  over-regulation  refiners  ultra-low-sulfur-diesel 

Jane Van Ryan

Jane Van Ryan
Posted September 27, 2010

Changes are planned for heating oil in the Northeast. In the region of the country where the preponderance of heating oil customers are located, several states are reducing the amount of sulfur allowed in the fuel. 

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