September 26, 2011

Manchin-Sponsored Legislation to Roll Back EPA’s Cement MACT Rule Would Save Construction Jobs

Washington, D.C. – U.S. Senator Joe Manchin (D-W.Va.) is sponsoring bipartisan legislation to protect cement and construction industry jobs across America.  The Cement Sector Regulatory Relief Act (S. 1610) directs the Environmental Protection Agency to re-propose and finalize a more reasonable Cement MACT rule that gives the industry enough time to comply with the new emission standards.  

“With tens of thousands of good American jobs on the line, now is not the time to inflict unreasonable new regulations on the cement and construction industries,” Senator Manchin said. “I’m proud to support legislation that reins in the EPA and advances the commonsense idea that government should be an ally to businesses, not an adversary. With our economy struggling, hardworking Americans in my state and all over the country need the certainty that the government won’t impose new rules too quickly and will give industry enough time to comply without eliminating jobs and closing plants.” 

Senator Manchin joins a bipartisan group of his colleagues, including Senators John Barrasso (R-Wyo.), Roy Blunt (R-Mo.), and Mary Landrieu (D-La.) in introducing the legislation. 


Cement is the key ingredient in concrete, the foundation of American infrastructure.  The cement industry is suffering through its greatest decline since the 1930s.  If the EPA moves forward with its new Cement MACT rule, it would cut domestic cement manufacturing capacity by 20 percent within the next two years.  

In addition to destroying jobs in the cement manufacturing industry, the rule is also expected to destroy 12,000 to 19,000 construction jobs because of higher construction costs.  

The Cement Sector Regulatory Relief Act will save cement and construction industry jobs by:

  • Providing EPA with at least 15 months to re-propose and finalize an achievable Cement MACT rule for cement manufacturing facilities.

  • Extending compliance deadlines from three to at least five years to allow facilities adequate time to comply with standards and install necessary equipment.

  • Directing EPA, when developing the new rules, to adopt definitions that allow cement manufacturing plants to continue to use alternative fuels for energy recovery.

  • Directing EPA to ensure that new rules are achievable by cement manufacturing facilities in the United States and impose the least burdensome regulatory alternatives consistent with the President’s Executive Order 13563.