Committee Approves Legislation to Study Cumulative Economic Costs and Consequences of EPA's Biggest Rules

July 12, 2011

WASHINGTON, DC - The House Energy and Commerce Committee today approved legislation calling for a comprehensive review of proposed and recently issued regulations that have the potential to impose tens of billions in compliance costs, eliminate hundreds of thousands of jobs, drive up the price of energy, and reduce U.S. competitiveness in an increasingly global economy. 

H.R. 2401, the Transparency in Regulatory Analysis of Impacts on the Nation Act, or TRAIN Act, passed the committee with bipartisan support by a vote of 33 to 13. The TRAIN Act, introduced by committee members John Sullivan (R-OK) and Jim Matheson (D-UT), requires an interagency committee to analyze the cumulative impacts of major new EPA rules on our economy, jobs, and energy prices. 

The legislation was approved after the committee adopted an amendment to delay implementation of EPA's controversial Utility MACT rule and new transport rule to ensure that the economic impacts of these two major rules in conjunction with other EPA rules are well understood.  EPA estimates that the agency's Utility MACT rule alone will impose new compliance costs of $10.9 billion annually. A number of analyses have projected that the costs of these two rules taken together will be substantially higher than EPA's estimates and that collectively these two rules will result in plant shutdowns, increased electricity prices and job losses. 

"Industries are not subject to just a single rule, but are forced to comply with layers and layers of them. Before those rules take effect, regulators should fully understand their consequences for states, industries, workers, and our economy," said Energy and Commerce Chairman Fred Upton. "I applaud the work of my colleagues to refine and improve this bill to ensure a strong, bipartisan product that will truly foster a more sensible approach to regulation that protects jobs and our economy."