Monday, May 21, 2018

EPA Reaffirms RRP Lead Paint Rule, Estimates $5 Billion in Paybacks

EPA's economic review of the impact of the RRP rule reaffirms the
importance of lead regulation, particularly in areas of
improved public health and child development.

Last month, the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) completed a review of its Lead-Safe Renovation, Repair and Painting (RRP) Rule to determine its economic impact on small businesses. Since the review, EPA has announced there would be no changes to the RRP rule- citing a 150% to 500% payback in societal benefits due to increased lead safety regulation.

The RRP rule, which has been hotly contested by some contractors since it was enacted in 2008, was reviewed under Section 610 of the Regulatory Flexibility Act. This act requires government agencies to evaluated whether certain regulations negatively impact small businesses. Because small businesses account for more than 4 million lead projects a year, critics of the RRP rule feel that the EPA unfairly targets small business owners. They argue that lead-safe practices and certification are expensive, and criticize the amount of regulations around lead.

The review, however, found that the RRP rule accounts for an estimated $1.5 to $5 billion in societal benefits. These benefits are due to improved children's IQ and public health; a healthier, more educated population maximizes earning potential and growth at the micro and macro economic levels.

These payback estimates outweigh compliance estimates. The review provides an example where if contractors complied with RRP rule, about 211,000 children born in 2018 would be protected from lead poisoning and provide future benefits of $4.5 billion, or a return of $3.10 per dollar spent on RRP.

As a result of these findings, the RRP rule will remain unchanged.

EPA's analysis may put to rest unsubstantiated claims that the RRP rule isn't useful. With even more evidence of the importance of lead regulation, it's important for industry professionals to ensure local compliance. Since the RRP rule, childhood lead exposure has been significantly reduced- let's see it become eradicated.

To learn more about the 610 review, read the document here. To learn more about lead paint certification or to find a training class, visit Zack Academy's lead homepage. Zack Academy offers the most comprehensive online schedule and registration system for the RRP training classes across the US.

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