Iterative approach to regulation a pattern for EPA

Continuing its iterative approach to regulation, the US Environmental Protection Agency is looking anew at air-emission standards rejected in court. This has become a pattern for the Obama administration’s EPA. Summoned to action by law, the agency imposes the strictest possible controls. Sometimes, as with a deferred toughening of ozone standards in Obama’s first term, EPA acts even without statutory prompting. Regulated groups then sue, usually claiming among other things that EPA overstepped its authority. Sometimes they win; sometimes they don’t. When found to have acted too aggressively, EPA looks for a legal cure and resubmits the regulation—another iteration. This process is costly...

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