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Statement by the U.S. EPA Press Secretary, Jonathan Shradar

Release Date: 03/14/2008
Contact Information: Jonathan Shradar, (202) 564-4355 / shradar.jonathan@epa.gov

(Washington, D.C. – March 14, 2008) This week, EPA met its requirements under the Clean Air Act and signed the most stringent 8-hour standard ever for ozone, revising the standards for the first time in more than a decade. The agency based the changes on the full breadth of the most recent scientific evidence about the effects of ozone, the primary component of smog.

The ozone standard preferred by the President and ultimately chosen by the Agency is as stringent as the other option the Agency had considered. The same level of protection is provided by the chosen standard; only the format of the selected standard is different.

EPA’s ozone rule this week is consistent with the Clinton Administration’s policy. In fact, EPA followed what Clinton’s EPA Administrator (Carol Browner) did by choosing a secondary standard identical – in form and level – to the primary standard.

EPA is unaware of either Paul Clement or anyone else in the Solicitor General’s office ever stating or advising that “the rules contradicted the EPA’s past submissions to the Supreme Court” as the Washington Post article today asserts.

Bottom line -- America’s air is cleaner today than it was a generation ago and the rule EPA signed this week is the most stringent 8-hour standard ever for ozone.