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Discussion Draft: Replacing the EPA

Discussion Draft: Replacing the EPA

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Published by American Solutions
The EPA should be replaced with an agency dedicated to bringing together science, technology, entrepreneurs, incentives, and local creativity to maintain a clean environment. The result will be a stronger economy that generates more American jobs and more American energy at lower cost while protecting human health and safeguarding the environment through smarter regulations.
The EPA should be replaced with an agency dedicated to bringing together science, technology, entrepreneurs, incentives, and local creativity to maintain a clean environment. The result will be a stronger economy that generates more American jobs and more American energy at lower cost while protecting human health and safeguarding the environment through smarter regulations.

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Published by: American Solutions on Feb 08, 2011
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02/08/2011

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DISCUSSION DRAFTDRAFT
 – 
FEBRUARY 8, 2011
Paid for by American Solutions for Winning the Future.Not authorized by any candidate, or candidate committee. Not printed at government expense.1425 K Street, NW, Suite 750, Washington, DC 20005; 202-355-9470; f. 202-355-9471www.AmericanSolutions.com 
REPLACING THE EPA
We Need To Replace the EPA with a new Environmental Solutions Agency, Engage in Smarter Regulation of the Environment,
 
 And Put an End to the Economically Harmful War on American Energy
--DISCUSSION DRAFT--
Summary
 America is faced with a challenge, and with that challenge comes a historic opportunity.The challenge is rethinking how we can protect the environment and public health, such that wedo not needlessly sacrifice jobs, economic growth, and the creation of new wealth.The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has transformed from an agency with the original
animating and noble mission to “
 protect human health and to safeguard the naturalenvironment 
1
into a job-killing, centralizing engine of ideological litigation and regulation that blocks economic progress at every turn while failing to fulfill its basic mission of protectinghuman health and the environment in an economically affordable manner. In the name of safeguarding the environment, the EPA has become a tool of ideologues to push an anti-businessagenda that would never survive the scrutiny of the American voter. Even worse, the EPA hasbecome the bureaucracy of choice for Presidents to exert more control over the decision makingof the private sector and local and state governments, stifling the very innovation and entrepreneurship that is necessary to achieve and protect a clean environment.
The EPA’s current attempts to regulate greenhouse gases such as carbon dioxide, and thereby
the entire American economy, are the latest and definitive proof that the EPA is acting wellbeyond its original mandate.The EPA should be replaced with an agency dedicated to bringing together science, technology,entrepreneurs, incentives, and local creativity to maintain a clean environment. The result willbe a stronger economy that generates more American jobs and more American energy at lower cost while protecting human health and safeguarding the environment through smarter regulations.
The Environment Is Cleaner and Americans Are Living Longer
 
The EPA is currently 40 years old. For the first half of its existence, the EPA did a noteworthy job of cleaning up the environment. The result is that the environment
 – 
air, ground, and water --has been remarkably clean for some time by various technical measures.
1
Environmental Protection Agency
 – 
 
- 2 -
WORKING PAPERDRAFT
 – 
FEBRUARY 8, 2011
Paid for by American Solutions for Winning the Future.Not authorized by any candidate, or candidate committee. Not printed at government expense.1425 K Street, NW, Suite 750, Washington, DC 20005; 202-355-9470; f. 202-355-9471www.AmericanSolutions.com 
For example, the EPA creates air quality trends using measurements from monitors locatedthroughout the United States. Since 1980, America has reduced carbon monoxide emissions by80%, nitrogen dioxide emissions by 48%, and sulfur dioxide emissions by 76%. Lead has alsobeen reduced by an astounding 93%.
2
 
With respect to emissions of toxics, data from the EPA’s Toxic Release Inventory similarly
shows increasing reductions over time.Water quality is a similar story. A report on man-made chemicals in drinking water released in2008 by the U.S. Geological Survey concluded:
The laboratory analytical methods used in this study have relatively lowdetection levels
 – 
commonly 100 to 1,000 times lower than State and Federal standards and guidelines for protecting water quality. Detections, therefore, do not necessarily indicate a concern to humanhealth but rather help to identify emerging issues and to track changes in
occurrence and concentrations over time ….
 The annual mean concentrations of all compounds detected in finished water were less than established human-health benchmarks, and concentrations of most compounds were several orders of magnitude lessthan human-health benchmarks. With the exception of one detection of atrazine at one site, maximum measured concentrations of all commonlydetected compounds in finished wates were less than established human-health benchmarks
.
3
 
It thus comes as no surprise that Americans’ life expectancy collectively has continued to r 
iseover the decades. According to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control:
 In 2006, life expectancy at birth was 77.7 years, increasing by 0.3 years from 77.4 years in 2005. This increase is typical of the average annualchanges that have occurred during the last 30 years. Throughout the past century, the trend is U.S. life expectancy was one of gradual improvement and this trend has continued into the new century
.
4
 
Despite the Record of Environmental Improvement and Protecting HumanHealth, the EPA is Increasing Its Regulatory Burden on Society
Data from the White House’s Office of Information & Regulatory Affairs (OIRA) confirm that
the EPA is increasing, not decreasing, the pace of its issuance of burdensome regulations. On
2
 
Environmental Protection Agency
 – 
3
For more information, see generally F. Hayward, Index of Leading Environmental Indicators 2009 (PacificResearch Institute) (available at http://www.pacificresearch.org/docLib/20090414_Env_Index_09.pdf ).
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National Vital Statistics Reports, Vol. 58, No. 21, United States Life Tables, 2006 (available athttp://www.cdc.gov/nchs/data/nvsr/nvsr58/nvsr58_21.pdf ).
 
- 3 -
WORKING PAPERDRAFT
 – 
FEBRUARY 8, 2011
Paid for by American Solutions for Winning the Future.Not authorized by any candidate, or candidate committee. Not printed at government expense.1425 K Street, NW, Suite 750, Washington, DC 20005; 202-355-9470; f. 202-355-9471www.AmericanSolutions.com 
January 26, 2011, Rep. Cliff Stearns (R-FL) noted that in April 2010 the Obama Administrationhad issued 190 economically significant regulations (those with an impact of $100 million ormore), and that by December of 2010, that number had climbed to 224. At the same hearing,OIRA
Administrator Cass Sunstein answered “about 500” in response to a question about how
many new regulations had been issued since the Obama Administration took office. Not all of those 500 regulations are from the EPA, but OIRA data confirm that the EPA remains thedominant issuer of major new regulations within the federal government bureaucracy.So what risks are EPA regulating, given that the environment is dramatically cleaner and humanhealth is improving? The answer is ever and ever more miniscule risks, without regard to athoughtful analysis of whether elimination of such risks is warranted based on fundamentalprinciples of risk assessment (which of course takes into account exposure) and cost-benefitanalysis (which takes into account whether the costs of regulation exceed the benefits).Examples of this regulatory overreach abound. For instance, the EPA has decided that, sincemilk contains oil, it has the authority to force farmers to comply with new regulations to file
“emergency management”
plans to show how they will cope with spilled milk and how they will
train “first responders
,
while also requiring them to
 build “containment facilities” if there is a
flood of spilled milk.The EPA has also proposed new particulate emissions standards that would regulate farms sostringently that even driving a tractor across a field could trigger federal oversight, as the EPAbelieves the dust produced from such a routine activity is a threat to public health.There is also strong evidence that the EPA, through regulatory overreach, bears a considerableamount of blame for the national resurgence of bed begs. By the early 1990s, bed bugs hadlargely been eliminated due to the use of several pesticides, including Propoxur. But in the mid-1990s the EPA banned Propoxur and other similar pesticides. At the University of Kentucky, theacademic headquarters for studying bed bugs, researchers concluded in January 2010 that
“today’s products are not as effective as the ones we had previously.”
5
Even though the EPA
admits that part of the growing bed bug problem is due to “
ineffective pest control practices
,”
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itsban on proven pesticides remains intact.Nor is
EPA’s overreach limited to imposing new regulations; it also includes administering
existing rules on an ad hoc basis. For example, in 2006 Shell Oil acquired leases to drill in theBeaufort and Chukchi seas, and the EPA granted the company an air quality permit shortlythereafter. But after several environmental organizations sued, the EPA sent the permit back forfurther review using a more restrictive and complicated methodology. Although Shell appealedthe decision, achieving a reversal is such a time-consuming and uncertain process that thecompany recently decided it would rather scrap its current plans and focus on other futureprospects. Since 2006 Shell has spent more than $3 billion just in lease costs and annualpayments while the federal government, particularly the EPA, waffled on its decisions and heldup permitting. To date, a half decade has passed and EPA has still not been able to issue a usable
5
College of Agriculture, University of Kentucky: http://www.ca.uky.edu/news/?c=n&d=531 
6
Environmental Protection Agency
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