Letter Supporting S. 1610, the “Cement Sector Regulatory Relief Act of 2011”
TO THE MEMBERS OF THE UNITED STATES SENATE:
The U.S. Chamber of Commerce, the world’s largest business federation representing the interests of more than three million businesses and organizations of every size, sector, and region, supports S. 1610, the “Cement Sector Regulatory Relief Act of 2011.” We urge you to cosponsor this bipartisan bill which would protect the nation’s cement manufacturing industry from shutting down up to 20 percent of the industry’s plants in order to comply with EPA’s flawed “Cement MACT” regulations.
The cement industry has not recovered from the recent economic slowdown. The industry faces seven proposed or recently finalized EPA regulations, ranging from fly ash disposal and greenhouse gases to Clean Air Act standards of performance. Cement MACT regulations are the harshest of these regulations imposed by the EPA on the industry. Cement MACT regulations as currently written are too strict to allow for cost-effective compliance by the cement industry. The Portland Cement Association estimates that the regulations would force the shutdown of 18 of the nation’s nearly 100 existing cement plants, and that does not include the seven cement plants that have already announced (due to economic and other reasons) permanent closure since 2008.
S. 1610 would require EPA to propose more reasonable emission standards for cement plants and related solid waste incinerators. It would help protect up to 4,000 cement sector jobs at risk due from EPA regulations on the cement industry. And it would go a long way toward keeping the nation’s cement industry strong.
The Chamber supports S. 1610 and urges you to cosponsor it.
R. Bruce Josten