EPA Ozone Regulation

by | Oct 11, 2015 | Uncategorized

The EPA’s has tightened NAAQS standards for ground-level ozone. Last week, the EPA issued a new rule that lowers the allowable amount of ozone from 75 parts per billion to 70 parts per billion. AutoCASE has that externality covered.


On October 1, 2015, EPA strengthened the National Ambient Air Quality Standards (NAAQS) for ground-level ozone to 70 parts per billion (ppb), based on extensive scientific evidence about ozone’s effects on public health and welfare. The updated standards will improve public health protection, particularly for at-risk groups including children, older adults, people of all ages who have lung diseases such as asthma, and people who are active outdoors, especially outdoor workers. They also will improve the health of trees, plants and ecosystems.”

Troposheric, or ground level ozone, is not emitted directly into the air, but is created by chemical reactions between oxides of nitrogen (NOx) and volatile organic compounds (VOC). Ozone is likely to reach unhealthy levels on hot sunny days in urban environments. Ozone can also be transported long distances by wind. For this reason, even rural areas can experience high ozone levels.” Source: EPA

What values does AutoCASE use for the constiyuent pollutants that make up ozone? Well, we use 13 studies and 84 estimates to put a value of the Volatile Organic Compounds (VOC) and Nitrogen Oxides (NOx) that are cooked to make ozone.

Ozone Valuation Methodology

We use a synthesis of 84 estimates from 13 studies of the externality costs of VOC & NOx.

These studies are used to create a probability distribution where the most likely value is always set equal to the US federally recommended value from the TIGER guidelines – US EPA (2012) below. The low and high are calculated as the average of all the valuations below, or above, the TIGER value, respectively.

The studies used are listed below.


· 66 estimates from 9 studies

  1. Mike Holland, Paul Watkiss, (2002), “Benefits Table database: Estimates of the marginal external costs of air pollution in Europe”, European Commission DG Environment, http://ec.europa.eu/environment/enveco/air/pdf/betaec02a.pdf.
  2. H. Scott Matthews, Lester B. Lave, (2000), “Applications of Environmental Valuation for Determining Externality Costs”, Environmental Science & Technology, Vol. 34, No. 8, p. 1390-1395, http://pubs.acs.org/doi/abs/10.1021/es9907313.
  3. Gena Gibson, et al., (2014), “Update of the Handbook on External Costs of Transport”, European Commission – DG Mobility and Transport, http://ec.europa.eu/transport/themes/sustainable/studies/doc/2014-handbook-external-costs-transport.pdf
  4. Dave Sawyer, Seton Stiebert, Colin Welburn, (2007), “Evaluation of Total Cost of Air Pollution Due to Transportation in Canada”, Marbek Resource Consultants and RWDI Inc., Transport Canada, http://publications.gc.ca/collections/collection_2008/tc/T22-148-2007E.pdf.
  5. Mike Holland, Steve Pye, Paul Watkiss, Bert Droste-Franke, Peter Bickel, (2005), “Damages per tonne emission of PM2.5, NH3, NOx and VOCs from each EU25 Member State (excluding Cyprus) and surrounding seas”, Clean Air for Europe (CAFE) Programme, http://ec.europa.eu/environment/archives/cafe/activities/pdf/cafe_cba_externalities.pdf.
  6. ECONorthwest

    and Parsons Brinckerhoff Quade & Douglas, Inc., (2002), “Estimating the Benefits and Costs of Public Transit Projects: A Guidebook for Practitioners”, Transit Cooperative Research Program, Federal Transit Administration. http://www.tcrponline.org/PDFDocuments/tcrp_rpt_78.pdf.

  7. Nicholas Z. Muller, Robert Mendelsohn, (2010), “Weighing the Value of a Ton of Pollution”, Regulation, Vol. 33, No. 2, p. 20, Summer 2010, http://object.cato.org/sites/cato.org/files/serials/files/regulation/2010/6/regv33n2-5.pdf.
  8. United States Department of Transportation, (2014), “TIGER Benefit-Cost analysis (BCA) Resource Guide”, https://www.transportation.gov/sites/dot.gov/files/docs/TIGER%20BCA%20Resource%20Guide%202014.pdf
  9. US EPA (2012). Regulatory Impact Analysis: Final Rulemaking for 2017-2025 Light-Duty Vehicle Greenhouse Gas Emission Standards and Corporate Average Fuel Economy Standards.


· 84 Estimates from 13 studies (9 above plus the 4 below):

  1. M.Q. Wang, D.J. Santini, S.A. Warinner, (1994), “Methods of Valuing Air Pollution and Estimated Monetary Values of Air Pollutants in Various U.S. Regions”, Center for Transportation Research, United States Department of Energy, http://www.osti.gov/scitech/servlets/purl/10114725.
  2. Peter Bickel, Rainer Friedrich, (2001), “Environmental External Costs of Transport”, Environmental Sciences Pollution and Remediation.
  3. Department for Transport, (2014), “Air Quality Valuation Workbook”, https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/webtag-environmental-impacts-worksheets.
  4. Office of Air and Radiation, (2013), “Regulatory Impact Analysis for the Federal Implementation Plans to Reduce Interstate Transport of Fine Particulate Matter and Ozone in 27 States; Correction of SIP Approvals for 22 States”, Office of Air Quality Planning and Standards, EPA, http://www3.epa.gov/airtransport/pdfs/FinalRIA.pdf.

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