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Air Pollution Cost-Benefit Rule

The 405 freeway on a smoggy California day.

The 405 freeway on a smoggy California day. Heavy-duty trucks are the largest source of smog-forming NOx in California.

Andi Pantz / Getty Images

What’s at Stake

The rule will do significant harm by minimizing the non-monetary benefits of air-quality protections, such as reductions in mortality and chronic illness.

Overview

A eleventh-hour Trump administration rule undermines the Environmental Protection Agency’s ability to protect air quality and public health.

Under the regulation, the EPA will be required to prepare an extensive cost-benefit analysis before proposing any significant protections under the Clean Air Act — even when Congress has prohibited the EPA from considering costs.

The regulation poses a particular threat to low-income communities, whose health and well-being will be further marginalized as a result of the rule’s requirements.

On its first day in office, the Biden administration announced that the cost-benefit rule is one of the many Trump administration policies that are currently under review.

Case Updates

January 25, 2021 | Legal Document

CA Communities Against Toxics et al v US EPA

Earthjustice, on behalf of California Communities Against Toxics, Natural Resources Defense Council, and the Sierra Club, filed a challenge to an eleventh-hour Trump Administration rule that undermines the Environmental Protection Agency’s ability to protect air quality and public health. Under the regulation, the EPA will be required to prepare an extensive cost-benefit analysis before proposing any significant protections under the Clean Air Act—even when Congress has prohibited the EPA from considering costs.