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ABC is troubled by the energy and environmental policy actions of the Obama administration, which have been moving forward without congressional approval via regulation and other administrative methods. The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has pursued costly and burdensome regulations without regard for the negative implications they would have on American businesses and their employees. Some of these regulations increase energy and material prices for the construction industry-not to mention the cost of living for employees-and impede economic recovery and job creation.

In addition, the call for a comprehensive energy policy has grown steadily stronger as fuel prices rise. ABC agrees that alternative/renewable energy sources are vital to America’s future; however, ABC also believes the implementation of such sources will only succeed when coupled with measures designed to lessen U.S. dependence on foreign sources of energy. These measures include increased domestic exploration and production of fossil fuels, as well as responsible deepwater drilling.

EPA Update: The Latest on WOTUS and the Clean Power Plan

On Feb. 6, the Environmental Protection Agency and U.S. Army Corps of Engineers published a final rule adding an applicability date of Feb. 6, 2020 to the 2015 rule defining “waters of the United States” (WOTUS). The agencies finalized the rule in order to provide the regulated community clarity and certainty about which definition of WOTUS is applicable nationwide.

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ABC Tells EPA Repeal of Clean Power Plan Will Save Money, Jobs

The Clean Power Plan proposed and finalized during the Obama administration would increase electricity costs by $40.5 billion while reducing the GDP by an average of $59 billion each year, cutting more than 375,000 jobs by 2030, ABC told the Environmental Protection Agency on Jan. 16. ABC submitted comments in support of the agency’s proposed rule to repeal the 2015 rule.

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Trump Administration Continues to Roll Back Burdensome Regulations

On Dec. 14, the Trump administration released its Regulatory Plan and Unified Agenda of Regulatory and Deregulatory Actions. The agenda lists upcoming rulemakings and other regulatory actions from each agency that the administration expects to release through the end of the year and in 2018. 

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ABC Roundup of Regulations Impacting Merit Shop Contractors

Over the last year, the Trump administration has taken major steps to roll back burdensome rules and regulations issued by the Obama administration. In his first two months in office, President Trump signed Executive Order 13777, “Enforcing the Regulatory Reform Agenda,” and Executive Order 13771, “Reducing Regulation and Controlling Regulatory Costs,” which create regulatory reform task forces to remove burdensome regulations and prevent agencies from issuing unnecessary regulations with a so-called “one in, two out” policy. 

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EPA Issues Proposal to Repeal Obama-era Regulations on Carbon Emissions

In move to relieve regulations and ensure affordable energy, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) today issued a proposal to repeal the Obama-era “Clean Power Plan.” On Aug. 3, 2015, President Obama’s EPA announced a final rule to cut power plant carbon emissions that would increase compliance and transaction costs and limit access to affordable energy for many hardworking Americans and U.S. businesses. However, since the issuance of the final rule, the regulation has not yet taken effect and is currently tied up in federal appeals court.

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