AG Schimel Sues EPA over New Ozone Standard

Wisconsin joined a coalition of states and industry groups challenging EPA’s new ozone standard. The new standard was released on October 26, 2015, and lowers the ozone standard to 70 parts per billion (ppb).

The states filed their brief in the United States Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia on April 22, 2016. Industry groups, including the US Chamber of Commerce and the National Association of Manufacturers, also filed briefs attempting to overturn the new standard.

This is EPA’s fourth ozone standard, which was initially set in 1979. The previous standard, set at 75 ppb, was issued in 2008. Arguments against the standard focus on the inability of states to reduce ozone levels approaching background levels and primarily caused by sources outside of the state. According to Attorney General Schimel, “Wisconsin’s expected to take impossible measures, like controlling the weather, under the new NAAQS.”

Wisconsin also argues that EPA’s interpretation of the Clean Air Act results in an unconstitutional delegation of legislative authority. For Wisconsin industry’s perspective on the new ozone standard, see Wisconsin Manufacturers & Commerce March 17, 2015, comments on the draft rule.