What’s EPA smoking?

Fewer than 1 in 5 Americans has any use for cigarettes nowadays, but here’s why the Obama Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has made smoking important to us all.

The EPA plans to issue in mid-December more stringent air-pollution standards for fine particulate matter (PM2.5), soot and dust roughly the width of a human hair. The agency has determined that any exposure to PM2.5 can cause death within hours or days of exposure, and there is no safe exposure to PM2.5. Those claims are not without controversy.

The Clinton EPA first began regulating PM2.5 in 1997, setting an average daily limit of 15 micrograms per cubic meter of air. Now the Obama EPA wants to tighten the average daily limit to somewhere between 12 and 13 micrograms per cubic meter, even though the average U.S. air purity is at 10 micrograms per cubic meter and falling.

The EPA says the new standard will bring health benefits worth $88 million to $5.9 billion annually while costing just $2.9 to $69 million per year.

More than 98 percent of those claimed benefits are based on the EPA’s assertion that PM2.5 kills people and each death costs society about $9 million, regardless of age, remaining life expectancy, health status and income prospects.

Read more at The Washington Times. By Steve Milloy.

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