Today, Senator Susan Collins (R-ME) and Senator Ron Wyden (D-OR) introduced bipartisan legislation that would stay the current Boiler MACT regulations. These regulations would stifle economic growth and threaten tens of thousands of manufacturing jobs. The National Association of Manufacturers joined a number of organizations, sending a letter to the Senate in support of this bipartisan legislation.

Senators Collins and Wyden issued a press release outlining the legislation, which will delay the costly and burdensome regulations, providing ample time for the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to craft a realistic and achievable final rule.

Specifically, this legislation would:

  • Ensure the rules are stayed for an adequate and certain period, as the EPA’s current administrative stay is being challenged;
  • Allow the EPA adequate time to re-propose the rules and get them right, including time for stakeholders to conduct more emissions testing and to avoid mistakes that occur when rulemakings of this scope and importance are rushed and become vulnerable to legal challenge;
  • Provide direction and support for the EPA to use the discretion it already has under the Clean Air Act and Executive Order 13563 to add flexibility and make the rules achievable;
  • Clarify that various materials, such as biomass residuals, are fuels and that certain gases in manufacturing processes do not result in boilers being treated as incinerators; and,
  • Give facilities more time to comply with the complex and capital-intensive requirements of the rules.

This bill is similar to H.R. 2250, the EPA Regulatory Relief Act of 2011, bipartisan legislation introduced earlier this month in the House of Representatives.

At a time of record unemployment, the last thing manufacturers need to face are excessive regulations that will increase the cost of doing business and diminish their ability to successfully compete in the global marketplace.

If the EPA continues to pursue its aggressive regulatory agenda on the Boiler MACT rules, manufacturers will be unable to make future investments, create jobs, and spur economic growth during a time when these actions are needed most.