"The new 75-part-per-billion ozone standard announced tonight by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency relies on flawed science to stymie the Texas economy. Many leading scientists and medical doctors have testified and submitted formal comments that this new standard will not provide any health benefits beyond today's 85-part-per-billion standard.
"With today's decision, the Austin, San Antonio, Tyler/Longview, and El Paso regions will join Dallas/Fort Worth and Houston/Galveston in non-attainment status. The new standard could quadruple the number of counties across the country in non-attainment status, including all Texas counties east of IH-35.
"Ozone is only produced in the presence of sunlight and heat. Some rural counties, particularly behind the ‘Pine Curtain', have naturally occurring ozone levels above the new standard. Eliminating all the industrial activity associated with the Houston/Galveston Ship Channel would not even get that region's ozone levels to the current standard.
"Last year, the state of Texas adopted rules to meet the current ozone standard. Those controls will continue to improve Texas ozone levels for years. But there is no action the state can take – not even draconian measures – that can overcome Texas' climate and topography, as today's EPA action requires."
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