Wednesday, April 26, 2006

Bush Relaxes Air Quality Standards

August, 2003- The Bush administration on Wednesday exempted thousands of older power plants, refineries and factories from having to install costly clean air controls when they modernize with new equipment that improves efficiency but increases pollution.
In a major new revision to its air pollution rules, the Environmental Protection Agency will allow up to 20 percent of the costs of replacing each plant's production system to be considered "routine maintenance" that doesn't require costly antipollution controls, according to agency documents obtained by The Associated Press.

April 2006- The President Is Directing EPA Administrator Steve Johnson To Use All His Available Authority To Grant Waivers That Would Relieve Critical Fuel Supply Shortages - As He Did After Last Year's Hurricanes. Under Federal air quality laws, some areas of the country are required to use a fuel blend called reformulated gasoline. This year, we are undergoing a rapid transition in the primary ingredient in reformulated gas - from MTBE to ethanol. State and local officials in the Northeast and in Texas worry that supplies could run low. To ensure that there are not needless restrictions to get gasoline to the pump, the EPA should be able to meet the request of officials seeking to waive local fuel requirements on a temporary basis. If Administrator Johnson finds he needs more authority to relieve the problem, the Administration will work with Congress to obtain the authority he needs.

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