The federal budget and the U.S. deficit has been a hot button issue in the early months of 2011. Debate over the issue has flared up during March and April, but there’s a specific part of the budget that has been the source of conflict between the Environmental Protection Agency and business owners. The EPA’s extremely expensive regulations have forced numerous business owners to their breaking point. As a result, the EPA has seen a monumental effort levied against its overreaching regulations.
The EPA has always had an awful reputation when it comes to American industry. Since the agency’s inception, they have been met with harsh criticism by the house GOP, and for good reason. Business owners look at the EPA as nothing more than a bureaucracy that cripples development with expensive regulations. Additionally, EPA’s regulations hinder revenue and job growth for many companies. Often times, the EPA’s onerous red tape hurts industry profits, forcing companies to hire additional workers to deal with said regulations, rather than moving forward with their business mission.
The GOP has teamed up with business leaders in a battle against the EPA. As a response to an early 2011 proposal from President Obama that would have marginally curbed the EPA’s authority, GOP representatives pushed forward a more rigid legislation that intended on cutting the EPA’s budget by nearly 30 percent. Their latest proposal was meant to cut funding from programs that don’t have a significant impact on the environment, such as The Clean Air Act. When viewing the Clean Air Act from a business standpoint, the regulation serves as nothing more than a work around to impose costly regulation standards.
Additionally, a handful of Republicans introduced the Energy Tax Prevention Act of 2011, which passed in Congress by a vote of 255-172 this past week. This legislation would put an end to the EPA’s cap and trade agenda, stripping the agency of its ability to regulate greenhouse gas emissions. The act prevents the agency from acting beyond its authority, taking away some of their decision making power, and placing it with Congress where it belongs. Senator James Inhofe and Congressmen Fred Upton, and Ed Whitfield see a number of benefits to the act. In a press release, the three have claimed that the act would “Protect American Jobs and manufacturers from overreaching EPA regulations that hinder our ability to compete with China and other countries.”
It is the preference of the GOP to lessen the EPA’s costly regulation while still retaining useful initiatives; for instance, the work the EPA has done to aide in asbestos related mesothelioma cases and problems resulting from water contamination. The EPA could use more resources dedicated to initiatives working to reduce asbestos from areas all over the United States. Campaigns of this nature have since worked to reduce health risks in the US, sometimes with life-saving results. Furthermore, the mesothelioma life expectancy