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WASHINGTON – The American Forest & Paper Association (AF&PA) will testify today at the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) public hearing for ozone national ambient air quality standards (NAAQS) in Washington, D.C., reiterating the adequacy of the existing standards based on the science and urging the agency to not tighten them further.
The following are excerpts from the testimony to be presented by AF&PA Chief Scientist Stewart Holm. Full testimony will be available on afandpa.org after the hearing, which includes additional technical information on mortality studies related to long-term ozone exposure.
“In 2006, EPA concluded that evidence for respiratory mortality from long-term ozone exposure was ‘suggestive’ of causation, but in the proposed rule, the EPA Administrator concluded that the association with respiratory mortality was likely to be causal, whereas evidence for all-cause and cardiovascular mortality were deemed to be suggestive of causation (US EPA, 2006, 2013). However, the evidence for respiratory mortality is limited, not consistent across studies, and not consistent with the evidence for total mortality. Consequently, these data do not support lowering the primary NAAQS below the current standard of 75 ppb.
“Studies of long-term exposures and respiratory mortality are far too limited to make a causal determination for respiratory mortality. Compared to studies of short-term ozone exposures and mortality, there are few studies that have evaluated mortality associated with long-term ozone exposures.”
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Editor’s Note: A full copy of the testimony is available here.
The American Forest & Paper Association (AF&PA) serves to advance a sustainable U.S. pulp, paper, packaging, and wood products manufacturing industry through fact-based public policy and marketplace advocacy. AF&PA member companies make products essential for everyday life from renewable and recyclable resources and are committed to continuous improvement through the industry’s sustainability initiative - Better Practices, Better Planet 2020. The forest products industry accounts for approximately 4 percent of the total U.S. manufacturing GDP, manufactures over $200 billion in products annually, and employs approximately 900,000 men and women. The industry meets a payroll of approximately $50 billion annually and is among the top 10 manufacturing sector employers in 47 states. Visit AF&PA online at www.afandpa.org or follow us on Twitter @ForestandPaper.