EPA report shows economic growth, environmental rules can co-exist

By Ledyard King, USA TODAY.

WASHINGTON — The Trump administration’s argument that “job-killing” environmental regulations are stifling U.S. economic growth is being undercut by … the Trump administration.

A new report from the Environmental Protection Agency found that since Congress passed the Clean Air Act in 1970, the economy has more than tripled and the number of vehicle miles traveled every year has nearly doubled — all while the nation’s population and annual energy consumption has surged.

At the same time, the levels of six key air pollutants — carbon monoxide, lead, nitrogen dioxide, ozone, particulate matter and sulfur dioxide — have declined dramatically.

The number of unhealthy air quality days annually in 35 of America’s largest cities has fallen significantly while the visibility at national parks across the country once shrouded in haze has improved substantially, the report said.