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Business Roundtable Major Regulations of Concern

Business Roundtable Major Regulations of Concern

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Published by Business Roundtable
Business Roundtable Major Regulations of Concern
Business Roundtable Major Regulations of Concern

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Categories:Types, Business/Law
Published by: Business Roundtable on Sep 27, 2013
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04/27/2014

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September 27, 2013Page 1
Major Regulations of Concern
A nation’s regulatory system is one of the most telling indicators of its business environment.On the one hand, smart regulations that clarify the “rules of the road” and are in line with
broad societal values over multiple election cycles can provide an environment of stability,inspire business confidence and accelerate investment. On the other hand, regulations thatcreate uncertainty and reflect shortsighted political interests can impose unproductive costburdens on businesses and consumers, undermine confidence and delay investment. The keydistinction, therefore, is not the quantity of regulations, but the effectiveness and efficiency of regulations as well as the balance between their costs and intended benefits.In recent years, the overall regulatory burden to U.S. businesses has grown substantially. Someexperts estimate that regulations impose hundreds of billions of dollars of costs on the U.S.economy each year. As a result, there are good reasons to believe that excessive regulation ishampering economic growth and recovery in the job market. An October 2011 Gallup poll of U.S. small business owners found that complying with government regulation is the most
“important problem” facing small businesses today –
more than low consumer confidence orlack of consumer demand.
i
 Business Roundtable CEOs have identified over 60 different pending or proposed regulationsthat may impose significant costs on the economy and unnecessary burdens on business. Theyare organized into the following categories and outlined below:
 
Environmental
 
Energy
 
Financial regulatory reform
 
Food
 
Labor
 
Transportation
 
Health care
 
Other
 
 
September 27, 2013Page 2
Issue Description of IssueEnvironmental
Industrial BoilerMaximum AchievableControl Technology(MACT)EPA has finalized rules to regulate hazardous air pollutant emissions fromexisting and new industrial, commercial and institutional boilers andprocess heaters.According to EPA, there are approximately 14,000 boilers and processheaters at major sources in the United States. Eighty-eight percent of these facilities will be required to conduct periodic tune-ups. Twelvepercent will be required to take steps to meet numeric emissionstandards.With respect to area sources, there are approximately 187,000 boilers at92,000 facilities at area sources in the United States. Most of those areasource boilers are located at commercial and institutional facilities and, ingeneral, are owned and operated by small entities. According to EPA,over 99 percent of area source boilers will be required to adhere to workpractice/management practice standards, which include tune-ups, insteadof numeric emissions limits. Less than 1 percent of area source boilerswill need to meet numerical emission limits.EPA estimates that the total costs of its rules will range from $2.2-$2.4billion per year.Greenhouse GasEmissionsRegulationsEPA has proposed new source performance standards (NSPS) for electricutilities that would preclude new coal-fired units from being built unlessequipped with carbon capture and control technology, which today hasnot been commercially or economically proven. As directed by thePresident, EPA has re-proposed these rules. The President also hasdirected EPA to propose GHG standards for existing power plants by nolater than June 1, 2014, with a final rule by no later than June 1, 2015.Cooling Water IntakeStructures RuleProposed rules have been issued and are expected to be finalized in 2013.These rules will apply to electric power plants, and to manufacturingfacilities with open-loop or once-through cooling systems. These rulesthreaten to impose large costs for minimal environmental benefits andfew or no health benefits.
 
 
September 27, 2013Page 3
Issue Description of Issue
Particulate Matter(PM) NationalAmbient Air QualityStandards (NAAQS)The
Clean Air Act 
requires EPA to promulgate primary and secondaryNAAQS for six air pollutants, including particulate matter. Primarystandards have been established for PM10 and PM2.5. EPA has adopted afinal rule that strengthens the PM 2.5 NAAQS while retaining the existing
standard for PM 10. EPA’s rule sets
the PM 2.5 standard at 12micrograms per cubic meter, a substantial strengthen of the currentannual standard of 15 micrograms per cubic meter. EPA anticipatesmaking attainment/nonattainment designations by December 2014, withthose designations likely becoming effective in early 2015. States wouldhave until 2020 to meet the revised annual PM 2.5 health standards.New Source Review
“Major modifications” to maj
or stationary sources trigger a requirementfor New Source Review. Under EPA regulations, a major modificationincludes any physical change to or change in the method of operation of amajor stationary source that would result in a significant net emissions
increase of a regulated pollutant. While “major modification” excludes
routine maintenance, repair and replacement, these terms are not clearlydefined and have been interpreted differently by EPA over time.Substantial litigation has surrounded this program, with companies nowdeterred from upgrading existing equipment, even when the upgradedplant would be more efficient or reliable.Coal CombustionResiduals RegulationIn response to a spill at a TVA coal ash impoundment pond, EPA issuedproposed rules in June 2010 to regulate the disposal of coal residualsunder
Resource Conservation and Recovery Act 
(RCRA). EPA proposedtwo options, one of which would categorize coal residuals as a hazardouswaste, thus significantly increasing disposal costs and eliminating manycurrent beneficial recycling options. This is a discretionary rulemakingthat EPA is not obligated to issue. It is unclear when or if EPA intends tofinalize the rulemaking. Bipartisan legislation is under consideration toestablish a coal residuals program under a non-hazardous waste categoryof RCRA.

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