Over the last two and half years the Obama Administration, under the leadership of EPA Administrator Lisa Jackson, has taken some of the strongest actions since the enactment of the Clean Air Act four decades ago to protect our environment and the health of our families from air pollution.
On Friday, President Obama asked Administrator Jackson to withdraw the draft Ozone National Ambient Air Quality Standards at this time, as work is already underway to update a 2006 review of the science that will result in the reconsideration of the ozone standard in 2013.
Several state and local officials spoke out about the President’s announcement and commitment to working with state and local governments.
Michigan Governor Rick Snyder:
“The President made the right decision to stop this move by the EPA. The present ozone standard was last reviewed a mere three years ago. Michigan companies have worked hard to meet the standard, because we all support a healthy environment. It is important to balance environmental goals with the need for economic development, particularly as Michigan and the rest of the nation work to recover from the recession”
Los Angeles Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa:
“In our current economic climate, we must do everything we can to stimulate the economy short of taking a step back in the unprecedented environmental gains this administration has already made. This is the sort of balanced approach we need to create jobs and also improve the quality of air, health and life for countless Americans.”
East Moline, Illinois Mayor John Thodos:
“We in the Quad Cities are very happy with the President’s announcement. We take clean air very seriously, but it’s difficult enough to create jobs without these new standards. I fully support the President’s decision.”
Texas State Representative Garnet Coleman:
“I want to thank President Obama and his administration for listening and working with state and local governments. Withdrawing the new standard allows an update of the science and the reconsideration of the ozone standard in 2013 while granting our state and local governments and businesses more regulatory certainty and flexibility. President Obama and his administration are strong partners with those of us on the state and local level of government in the fight for clean air and public health.”
Bettendorf, Iowa Mayor Mike Freemire:
“The standards are quite rigorous as they are, and the threat of new standards from a manufacturing standpoint aren’t helpful for the economy or growing jobs. It’s a prudent move. Everything is a balancing act. I applaud the President for his decision.”
Scott County, Iowa Board of Supervisors Chair Tom Sunderbruch:
“I certainly support the President's move to withdraw the draft Ozone National Ambient Air Quality Standards at this time…I think delaying the standard change is the right thing to do. I also believe making sure you have the right science to know what to do next is important. I believe those responsible for setting the regulations should continue to research the issue.”
Cecilia Muñoz is Deputy Assistant to the President and Director of Intergovernmental Affairs