NCPA - National Center for Policy Analysis

Obama's New Regulations to Cost $110 Billion

June 11, 2015

In what has become an unfortunate biannual tradition in failed transparency, the administration released its regulatory agenda on the eve of a holiday weekend, this time, the Thursday evening before Memorial Day. An American Action Forum (AAF) review of the agenda found more than $110 billion in potential costs, with billions more in unknown burdens.

The Obama administration listed 18 new "economically significant" regulations, down from 23 in the previous agenda. August and October will be busy this year. The administration plans to finalize its greenhouse gas standards for new and existing sources, protections for agricultural workers, and food safety measures. By October, the schedule calls for three final energy efficiency standards, produce safety regulation and a final ozone rule.

The two largest measures from Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) include:

  • Reduce greenhouse gas emissions from existing power facilities 30 percent by 2030, at an estimated cost of $8.8 billion.
  • Revise the National Ambient Air Quality Standards for ground-level ozone, at an estimated cost of $15 billion.

All together, the $110 billion estimate contains just 37 monetized figures and an incredible amount of uncertainty. The public does not yet know the cost of proposed efficiency standards for heavy-duty trucks and engines or the dozens of other major rules without a public cost-benefit analysis. The previous heavy-duty rule cost more than $8 billion. In fact, the new rule is slated for final publication on January of 2017, a "midnight" period for presidents when there has historically been a rush of regulatory activity.

Source: Sam Batkins, "Administration's Regulatory Agenda Imposes $110 Billion in Costs," American Action Forum, June 10, 2015. 


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