The Portland Cement Association (PCA) released the following statement regarding the National Ambient Air Quality Standards (NAAQS) for ground-level ozone anticipated to be finalized by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) today. The statement is attributable to James G. Toscas, PCA president and CEO.
Please contact Erik Rancatore at PCA (847-972-9138 / firstname.lastname@example.org) for more information on this issue.
“The cement industry has for well over a century served as the foundation of economic development in the US. This is a responsibility we take seriously and with pride, as we do environmental stewardship. As part of our commitment to both the natural and the built environment, we continuously make significant investments in equipment, systems, and operating methods to improve efficiency and reduce environmental impacts. Thus far since 2000, these measures have contributed to an 18 percent reduction in US ozone levels.
“Ozone levels continue to drop, and today most areas meet or exceed the requirements set by EPA in 2008. Although this should be considered a great success, EPA is resetting the game by lowering ozone limits even further. This will likely make it impossible for the most difficult areas to comply. More importantly, hundreds of low-ozone areas that meet the 2008 standard will suddenly find themselves in noncompliance with new EPA rules. Many of these areas will have no practical way to further reduce ozone levels without significant curtailment of, and impact on, economic activity. While the new rules will impose great cost, their benefit to public health is questionable.
“Cement manufacturers will continue developing and deploying technologies to increase efficiency and reduce environmental impact, and will strive to meet all applicable rules and regulations. They will also continue to speak out when regulations are proposed or promulgated whose cost to society greatly exceeds their benefit.”