DENVER—The toxic-waste spilling Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) announced new rules Tuesday to crack down on refineries that could cost up to $1 billion.
Advancing Colorado Executive Director Jonathan Lockwood released the following statement:
“Refineries are heavily regulated and the industry has worked diligently to voluntarily address environmental concerns. The EPA continues to unleash costly regulations that kill jobs, harm the economy and hurt hardworking families. The fact is the EPA hasn’t proven itself responsible in driving energy policy and the new rule is one more attack on energy producers in our country.”
The rules will force refinery operators to adopt new emission monitoring and control technology. For the first time refineries will be required to install air monitors to measure levels of benzene and other chemicals.
The agency says its new rules will reduce toxic air pollutants by 5,200 tons and cut 50,000 tons of volatile organic compounds from the air annually. The agency also claims their new rules will result in a reduction in greenhouse gases equivalent to about 660,000 tons per year of carbon dioxide.
According to the Associated Press, EPA Chief Gina McCarthy said the rules “would protect the health of more than 6 million people who live within 3 miles of a refinery,” and called the new rule a “neighborhood watch” for refineries.
“EPA analyses, supported by extensive industry monitoring data, show that air emissions from refineries are already at safe levels,” API Downstream Group Director Bob Greco said. “The refinery industry has proven we can provide reliable American energy while protecting the environment and local communities, and collaborative efforts by API and the EPA led to final regulations that are more cost-effective than the proposal.”
According to the Environmental Defense Fund the rule is “the result of a lawsuit filed in 2012” by “Air Alliance Houston and others, including Texas Environmental Justice Advocacy Services, Community In-Power and Development Association, Louisiana Bucket Brigade, California Communities Against Toxics, Del Amo Action Committee, and Coalition For A Safe Environment.”