House panel OKs bill remaking key Clean Air Act program

By Sean Reilly | 03/07/2024 06:39 AM EST

The vote happened as Republicans eye a multipronged attack on a new EPA rule tightening soot emissions.

Rep. Buddy Carter (R-Ga.).

Rep. Buddy Carter (R-Ga.), chair of the Energy and Commerce Subcommittee on Environment, Manufacturing and Critical Materials, is seen Wednesday. House Energy and Commerce Committee/YouTube

After rebuffing a string of Democratic amendments, a House Energy and Commerce panel Wednesday afternoon narrowly agreed to advance a proposed retooling of EPA’s machinery for setting some of its most important Clean Air Act regulations.

The Environment, Manufacturing and Critical Materials Subcommittee voted 10-9 along party lines to approve the “Air Quality Standards Implementation Act,” which would decisively change the process for making changes to the limits on airborne concentrations of soot, smog and four other common pollutants.

The process “is broken from beginning to end,” said subcommittee Chair Buddy Carter (R-Ga.), adding that the draft bill contained “practical reforms to help states effectively address air pollution.”


Democrats, however, panned the measure as a handout to industrial polluters that would undercut a decades-old system that has delivered steadily improved air quality.