Salt Lake City—The Baton Rouge Area Chamber (BRAC) released a public policy commentary Monday outlining the correlation between the economically top-performing metro areas in the nation and new ozone regulations proposed by the Obama administration, utilizing city performance rankings by the Bookings Institution and Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) data as a basis for the analysis. In conclusion, 18 of the 20 top-performing metropolitan economies are at risk from the new ozone standards. The complete analysis appears below.
All but two of the nation’s top 20 metropolitan area economies, as ranked by the Brookings Institution’s assessment of performance through recession and recovery, would fall into “ozone nonattainment” status if the Obama administration moves forward with its more aggressive regulatory plans for air quality, according to an analysis completed by the Baton Rouge Area Chamber (BRAC).
The proposed National Ambient Air Quality Standards (NAAQS) for ground level ozone rule, issued by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) on December 17, 2014, is designed to lower the current NAAQS of 75 parts-per-billion (ppb) to a range between 65 and 70 ppb. Should the Obama administration push forward with a standard of 65 ppb, 18 of the U.S.’s 20 top-performing metropolitan economies, including the two in Utah, would find themselves in a regulatory posture of “nonattainment,” and all the regulatory consequences that entails.