WASHINGTON – American Wood Council (AWC) President and CEO Robert Glowinski issued the following statement today following the Environmental Protection Agency's (EPA) release of its final National Ambient Air Quality Standards (NAAQS) for particulate matter (PM).
"While EPA retained the secondary and daily PM standard, we are disappointed that EPA chose to set the annual PM standard at 12 µg/m3, making it challenging for the wood products industry to pursue projects that spur economic growth. EPA has also ignored the significant uncertainty in the underlying health science. Lowering the annual PM standard means that sawmills and wood product businesses that are beginning to ramp up production to meet the demand of a growing housing market could be hard pressed to show compliance with the new standards. EPA has ignored several studies that show that the current standard is more than adequate to protect public health.
"In addition, we are concerned that the agency entered into a consent decree to issue final PM regulations in an expedited fashion despite stakeholder comments stating that this regulation will impose an undue burden on employers as they continue to face economic uncertainty."