Greg Walden: Praise for EPA delay on job-killing boiler rules

Walden praises EPA action to delay implementation of job-killing boiler rules
By Congressman Greg Walden

WASHINGTON, D.C. — The Environmental Protection Agency yesterday sought to delay implementation of controversial job-killing rules that would impose tens of billions of dollars in new capital costs at thousands of facilities with boilers across the country, including in Oregon. The EPA, which originally wanted the new rules to take effect in January 2011, is now signaling it wants until April 2012 to implement the new rules.

When the EPA announced their new rule on June 4, 2010, it drew bipartisan criticism from across the country. The plan would impose unreasonably strict new emission limits on industrial, commercial and institutional boilers using fossil fuels and renewable forest biomass.

U.S. Rep. Greg Walden helped lead a bipartisan letter on August 2 to EPA Administrator Lisa Jackson that said the EPA’s pending rules “could be unsustainable for U.S. manufacturing and the high-paying jobs it provides.”

“This is the worst possible time for new job-killing regulations that make it harder for business to grow and for the economy to recover,” Rep. Walden said. “The EPA is doing the right thing by delaying these ill-advised rules. Now that the EPA has realized the negative impacts of moving forward, I hope the EPA works with the bipartisan coalition in Congress that is ready and willing to help identify solutions that protect the environment and public health while not destroying jobs at the same time.”

“These sorts of rule writings are exactly what we need to perform greater oversight on in the Energy and Commerce Committee,” Rep. Walden said.

The rule’s high compliance costs will discourage renewable biomass use and disproportionately damage rural economies.

Impacting around 55,000 boilers nationwide, the EPA rules would require more than 99 percent of boilers to meet standards that only the top 12 percent of boilers can meet.

The cost to the forest products industry alone is estimated at $7 billion, and the cost to the manufacturing economy would be between $20 billion and $50 billion.

Representative Greg Walden is the chairman of the House Republican Leadership and represents Oregon’s Second Congressional District, which is comprised of 20 counties in eastern, southern, and central Oregon.


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