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Hearing On Controversial EPA Plan To Reduce Car Pollution Being Held In Chicago

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CBS Chicago (con't)

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CHICAGO (CBS) — The Obama Administration is holding a second and final public hearing today in Chicago on its controversial plan to sharply cut air pollution from cars, starting in 2017.

The EPA plan essentially would shift the rest of the country to California’s tough auto emission standards. The agency’s Christopher Grundler says the proposed rules would save as many as 2,400 lives a year and prevent 23,000 cases of asthma and other respiratory illnesses.

“The auto industry’s on board, public health groups are on board, state and local air quality agencies very much want these measures.”

The main opposition is from the oil industry which says part of the proposal for lower sulfur gasoline wouldn’t reduce pollution and would add nine cents to the cost of a gallon.

Rachel Butler with the Sierra Club doesn’t buy it. “Studies have shown that the cost of this rule is actually going to work to only about one cent per gallon and that’s a price that we can afford for better health.”

Under the Clean Air Act, the EPA has the authority to implement its proposal without congressional approval.