WASHINGTON, D.C. – U.S. Sen. Jim Inhofe (R-Okla.), a senior member of the Senate Committee on the Environment and Public Works (EPW), sent a letter to Administrator Lisa Jackson asking the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to revise the proposed worst case scenario modeling guidelines of the 1-hour Sulfur Dioxide (SO2) National Ambient Air Quality Standards (NAAQS).

“We have manufacturing and industrial facilities throughout Oklahoma that will be forced to abide by new EPA rules that unnecessarily restrict Oklahoma’s booming energy and industrial development, with no added benefits to clean air,” Inhofe said. “When constructing air quality monitoring models, we must always ensure that sound science is used to provide maximum flexibility to the states. If models are going to be used, they need to be realistic; they shouldn’t simply include assumptions dreamed up by bureaucrats at EPA.  Oklahoma’s Department of Environmental Quality is well equipped to design its own model, and it doesn’t need new rules rooted in inaccurate data and flawed EPA assumptions.”

The letter notes that one of the two methods detailed in an EPA white paper last May for monitoring the SO2 NAAQSs are based on inaccurate assumptions.

The letter states, “The current modeling assumptions in the EPA guidelines over predict the expected ambient air quality levels due to the use of worst case meteorology, emissions data, and other scenarios concurrently.”

“We expect the EPA will adopt a measured approach that provides States the necessary flexibility and discretion to tailor their respective approaches to accurately establish their attainment status.”

The letter is signed by Sen. Inhofe and Sens. David Vitter and Mary Landrieu of Louisiana. 

You can view the letter here.