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The Massive Impact of EPA's New Proposed Ozone Regulation

On December 17, 2014, EPA published in the Federal Register its proposed new National Ambient Air Quality Standards (NAAQS) to sharply reduce the current ozone levels. These new standards will affect a wide range of industries, including those that paint, coat, bake, manufacture, package, or print.

Between 500 and 600 counties nationwide will be thrown into non-attainment status in 2017 when EPA starts enforcement of the new standards. Permits to construct or modify many emissions sources will be difficult, if not impossible, to obtain in non-attainment areas. Civil penalties for non-compliance are up to $37,500 per day, per source. Criminal penalties apply to knowing violation.

EPA's estimated costs for the new standards in 2025 for all States, except California, range from $3.9 billion to $15 billion, depending on where the final standards are set. EPA's estimated costs for California post-2025 range from $0.8 billion to $1.6 billion. As explained in our White Paper on this proposed rule, these cost estimates are almost certainly far too low.

The deadline for comments on this proposed rule is March 17, 2015. If you would a copy of our White Paper, or want to discuss the proposed rule, please email nwbernstein@nwbllc.com.

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On January 27, 2014, the Supreme Court of the United States denied a petition for certiorari that sought to overturn our defeat of DOJ's arguments in the Seventh Circuit in Bernstein, et al. v. Bankert, et al. For the front page article in Bloomberg's Toxics Law Reporter, click here. For the Seventh Circuit's decision, click here.

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