Business Leaders Voice Opposition to Senator Rand Paul’s Attempt to Undermine the Clean Air Act by Repealing the Cross State Air Pollution Rule
WASHINGTON, Nov. 9, 2011 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ — In advance of Senate floor action on the motion to proceed to S.J. Res 27, Senator Rand Paul’s Resolution of Disapproval, business leaders issued the following statement:
We — leaders in the business community collectively representing over 125,000 businesses from across the country — are supportive of the Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) existing clean air rules, and stand united in opposition to legislative attempts to undermine the Clean Air Act. Currently, there are efforts in Congress to block the Cross State Air Pollution Rule (CSAPR) that requires power plants in 27 states to reduce emissions of smog- and soot-forming pollution that cross state lines and contribute to pollution in other states. Senator Rand Paul (R-KY) is promoting a shortsighted attempt to use the Congressional Review Act (CRA) to block the rule. The resolution would reject CSAPR and permanently block EPA from issuing similar standards. Blocking clean air regulations, such as CSAPR, is not only an affront to public health, but also to the economy.
Our experience has shown that the Clean Air Act yields substantial benefits to the economy and to businesses, and that these benefits consistently outweigh the costs of pollution reductions. According to the White House Office of Management and Budget, the total economic benefits of the Clean Air Act are estimated at more than four to eight times the costs of compliance. CSAPR, designed to address the burden of NOx and SO2 pollution from upwind states, will reduce air pollution that harms local economies and burdens businesses. The rule is a necessary step to help communities achieve national clean air standards and to give our economy the boost it needs.
If CSAPR is blocked by efforts in Congress, it makes it difficult for downwind communities to secure air quality permits that enable new business investment. Additionally, it undermines the $1.6 billion per year in capital investments already underway as a result of the rule CSAPR is replacing. Furthermore, by 2014, 1.8 million work days will be lost annually, as will the opportunity to reap up to $280 billion in annual health and welfare benefits according to EPA estimates.
With the economy still struggling to lift itself out of recession, American businesses can ill-afford the significant costs imposed by air pollution, whose negative impacts burden businesses with rising health care costs and reduced worker productivity. Furthermore, the capital investments related to these standards, such as more efficient technologies and pollution control infrastructure, will help create needed American jobs.
Rather than hurting job creation, sound regulation like the Clean Air Act will serve as a catalyst to innovation and new job creation. In the interests of reducing the burden of pollution on businesses and reaping the economic benefits of clean air, we strongly urge Congress to oppose legislative efforts to undermine EPA’s clean air regulations, such as Senator Paul’s CRA.
American Businesses for Clean Energy
American Sustainable Business Council
Main Street Alliance
American Businesses for Clean Energy (ABCE) with over 5,200 supporters nationwide is an initiative to demonstrate large and small business support for EPA’s clean air rules and Congressional enactment of clean energy and climate legislation. www.americanbusinessesforcleanenergy.org
The American Sustainable Business Council (ASBC) is a growing coalition of business networks and businesses committed to advancing a new vision, framework and policies that support a vibrant, equitable and sustainable economy. The Council brings together the business perspective, experience and political will and strength to stimulate our economy, benefit our communities, and preserve our environment. Today, the organizations that have joined in this partnership represent over 100,000 businesses and more than 200,000 entrepreneurs, owners, executives, investors and business professionals. www.asbcouncil.org
Environmental Entrepreneurs (E2) is the independent business voice for the environment. E2 is a national community of individual business leaders who advocate for good environmental policy while building economic prosperity. E2 takes a reasoned, economically sound approach to environmental issues by relying on fact-based policy expertise. As the independent business voice in the debate, E2 is effective and delivers results at both the state and national levels through its bipartisan efforts. www.e2.org
The Main Street Alliance is a national network of state-based small business coalitions. The Alliance creates opportunities for small business owners to speak for ourselves, advancing public policies that are good for our businesses, our employees, and the communities we serve. www.mainstreetalliance.org
SOURCE American Businesses for Clean Energy, American Sustainable Business Council, Environmental Entrepreneurs, and Main Street Alliance