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Final Report on Review of Agency Actions that Potentially Burden the Safe, Efficient Development of Domestic Energy Resources Under Executive Order 13783

October 25, 2017
By Environmental Protection Agency

EPA Releases Energy Independence Report

From the accompanying press release:

Today, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) released its final report on how EPA, under Administrator Scott Pruitt’s leadership, is implementing President Trump’s Executive Order 13783 to curb regulatory burdens in order to promote energy production and economic growth – while protecting human health and the environment. 

“EPA is committed to President Trump’s agenda,” said EPA Administrator Scott Pruitt.  “We can be both pro-jobs and pro-environment.  At EPA, that means we are working to curb unnecessary and duplicative regulatory burdens that do not serve the American people – while continuing to partner with states, tribes and stakeholders to protect our air, land, and water.”
 
EPA released its final report in accordance with President Donald Trump’s Executive Order (EO) 13783.  Notably, the report provides a look at how EPA is working to curb regulatory burdens that unnecessarily encumber energy production, constrain economic growth, and prevent job creation while protecting human health and the environment. The report can be found online here

The report discusses nine EPA actions on energy-related regulations covered by EO 13783. It further includes the following four initiatives EPA plans in undertaking to implement this order:
 

1.    New Source Review reform (NSR) – EPA is establishing an NSR Reform Task Force to review and simplify the NSR application and permit process.
 

2.    National Ambient Air Quality Standards (NAAQS) reform – EPA plans to use the newly formed Ozone Cooperative Compliance Task Force to review administrative options to meaningfully improve air quality as it relates to ozone. EPA will also work to streamline the approval of state air pollution plans, and eliminate EPA’s backlog of state pollution plans.

3.    Robust Evaluations of the Employment Effects of EPA regulations – Regulations impose high costs on American workers, particularly in the energy sector. Five environmental statutes state that EPA conduct continuing evaluations of potential shifts in employment that may result from implementation of these statutes.  The Agency historically has not conducted these assessments. EPA intends to conduct these evaluations consistent with the statutes.

4.    Reestablishing the Smart Sectors Program – EPA recently relaunched the Smart Sectors program to re-examine how it engages with American businesses to reduce unnecessary regulatory burdens, while protecting human health and the environment. (www.epa.gov/smartsectors). 

Background

On March 28, 2017, President Trump signed Executive Order (EO) 13783 promoting clean and safe development of the United States’ vast energy resources, while at the same time avoiding regulatory burdens that unnecessarily encumber energy production, constrain economic growth, and prevent job creation.

To that end, Section 2 of EO 13783 required an immediate review of all agency actions that potentially burden the safe, efficient development of domestic energy resources. Section 2 required the heads of agencies to review all existing regulations, orders, guidance documents, policies, and any other similar agency actions that potentially burden the development or use of domestically produced energy resources, with particular attention to oil, natural gas, coal, and nuclear energy resources.

Section 2 also required agencies to submit a plan on how the agency will carry out the review. For those agencies that submitted a plan, the agency was required to submit a draft final report to OMB and EOP offices within 120 days (by July 26, 2017). The EOP offices provided recommendations to the agencies to ensure the final reports that reflect the policies laid out in EO 13783.

Final reports were to be finalized within 180 days (by September 24, 2017) unless the OMB Director, in consultation with the other EOP officials, extend the deadline.

To assist agencies in the development of the EO 13783 reports, OMB developed guidance  on May 8, 2017 providing additional direction to agencies. OMB directed Agencies to provide a number of pieces of information in the agency final reports and to publish the final report on the agency website and in the Federal Register.