“Sound science makes it clear that we need to limit mercury and toxins in the air to protect children and vulnerable communities from dangerous pollution,” said Michael Reagan, EPA administrator. “EPA is actively committed to reducing pollution from the power sector so that everyone, regardless of zip code or the amount in their pocket, can breathe clean air and live a healthy and productive life.” .”
EPA officials completed work on restoring the mercury policy last fall, when they sent it to the White House for review. But administration officials upheld the policy, fearing it would antagonize industry, and lawmakers and President Biden are seeking support for the social and climate policy bill. His post is called Build Back Better, according to two people familiar with the matter. anonymous status.
After negotiations over Build Back Better collapsed in December, administration officials decided to stick with the mercury policy while congressional Democrats tried to save the bill.
Environmental advocates hail the new implementation of the mercury rule, the first federal standard requiring power plants to install expensive “dust filter” technology to reduce neurotoxin emissions. . At a time The Trump Administration RecoversMany environmental law experts see this as the first step towards eliminating other pollution limits.
“This is all an effort by the Trump administration to limit future regulations,” said Matthew Davis, a former EPA official who helped write the mercury rule and later partially left government. to make industry management more difficult. because the Trump administration has sought to undermine it. Mr. Davis currently works for the League of Conservation Voters, an advocacy group.
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When the Obama administration developed the mercury rule, it was estimated to cost the industry $9.6 billion a year, making it the most expensive clean air regulation in history. It also assessed the direct public health benefit of $6 million a year in mercury reductions – less than the cost to industry.
But then it listed the “copper benefit” of installing a purifier: a reduction in other pollutants, including sulfur dioxide and fine particulate soot, which have been linked to heart, brain, and lung diseases and breathing. Those related benefits are estimated at $80 billion over five years, including preventing 4,700 heart attacks, 130,000 asthma attacks, and 11,000 premature deaths annually.
https://www.nytimes.com/2022/01/31/climate/epa-mercury-pollution-coal.html Biden Administration Restores Weakened Mercury Pollution Rules Under Trump