OVERVIEW William L. Kovacs, Senior Vice President Environment, Technology & Regulatory Affairs U.S. Chamber ong>ofong> Commerce Over the last four years, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has ong>ofong>ten claimed that its new major, economically significant regulations create jobs. As industries have announced job layong>ofong>fs due to the newly issued regulations and the claims that job creation continued, it became necessary to undertake a study to understand how EPA reached its conclusions as well as the soundness ong>ofong> its findings that its regulations create jobs. To better understand the employment impacts ong>ofong> environmental regulations, the Chamber in 2012 commissioned the economic research firm NERA to undertake a study to review and assess EPA’s methods for estimating employment impacts related to air quality regulations. The Impact ong>ofong> ong>Regulationsong> onEmployment The impact ong>ofong> regulations on jobs has been debated in Congress for more than 45 years. The earliest discussionong>ofong> the impact ong>ofong> regulations on jobs is found during the congressional debate over the Air Quality Act ong>ofong> 1967. As part ong>ofong> the debate, Congress mandated a comprehensive study ong>ofong> the economic impacts ong>ofong> air quality standards on the nation’s industries and communities. A decade later, Congress mandated that the EPA administrator study the potential dislocationong>ofong> employees due to the implementationong>ofong> environmental laws. This mandate was codified by Congress in Section 321(a) ong>ofong> the Clean Air Act, which requires EPA to conduct continuing evaluations ong>ofong> potential loss and shifts in employment that may result from the implementation and enforcement ong>ofong> the Clean Air Act. Unfortunately, EPA has ignored this congressional mandate, thus depriving Congress ong>ofong> a significant body ong>ofong> data that would shed light on the impact ong>ofong> regulations on jobs and employment. In 2001, Justice Scalia, writing for a near unanimous U.S. Supreme Court in Whitman v. American Trucking Associations, clearly analyzed the regulations versus employment debate: [T]he economic cost ong>ofong> implementing a very stringent standard might produce health losses sufficient to ong>ofong>fset the health gains achieved in cleaning the air – for example, by closing down whole industries and thereby impoverishing the workers and consumers dependent upon those industries. That is unquestionably true, and Congress was unquestionably aware ong>ofong> it. Thus, Congress had commissioned in the Air Quality Act ong>ofong> 1967 (1967 Act) ‘a detailed estimate ong>ofong> the cost ong>ofong> carrying out the provisions ong>ofong> this Act; a comprehensive study ong>ofong> the economic impact ong>ofong> air quality standards on the Nation’s industries, communities and other contributing sources ong>ofong> pollution.’ Sec.2, 81 Stat. 505. The 1970 Congress, armed with the results ong>ofong> this study, see The Cost ong>ofong> Clean Air, S. Doc. No. 91 – 40 (1969) not only anticipated compliance costs could injure the public health, but provided for that precise exigency. 1 1 Whitman v. American Trucking Associations, 531 U.S. 457 (2001) at 466.