API testifies before EPA on proposed rule related to Clean Water Act

Published on July 06, 2020 by Dave Kovaleski

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The American Petroleum Institute (API) testified before the Environment Protection Agency (EPA) at a hearing on a proposed rule to establish processes for benefit-cost analyses (BCA) for significant rulemakings conducted under the CAA.

Specifically, the proposal, “Increasing Consistency and Transparency in Considering Costs and Benefits in the Rulemaking Process,” seeks to ensure that information regarding the benefits and costs of regulatory decisions is provided and considered consistently and transparently.

API supports this proposal to provide consistency and greater transparency in analyzing the benefits and costs of proposed rules. API officials say this would ensure that the EPA provides clarity on how new regulations will benefit the public, industry and all stakeholders.

“We encourage the EPA to finalize this proposal expeditiously and, to the extent possible, require that data and analyses used in establishing and evaluating environmental, health, welfare, and economic impacts be transparent and replicable,” API Senior Counselor of Policy, Economics and Regulatory Affairs Howard Feldman said. “This proposal is a step forward in providing a consistent process for new regulations to calculate benefits and costs that can inform the Agency as how to move forward with a rulemaking initiative. Implementation of a robust benefit and cost analysis process could support the Agency and other stakeholders to focus on rulemakings with the best opportunities to support further emission reductions.”

API noted the environmental progress the nation has made in the past decade under current regulations.

“The oil and natural gas industry has contributed substantially to these improvements, both by reducing its direct emissions and by supplying cleaner fuels to the power and transportation sectors,” Feldman said. “Under improved Clean Air Act provisions such as those being proposed in this rule, continued innovation and technologies developed by the oil and natural gas industry can build on these achievements and provide benefits based on sound benefit-cost analyses.”