EPA Administrator grilled by Sen. Mullin about rules resulting in higher food costs

Oklahoma U.S. Sen. Maarkwayne Mullin grilled EPA Administrator Michael Regan this week, criticizing the agency’s rules that are adding to the food costs for Americans.

“Under Joe Biden, costs have skyrocketed over 17 percent,” said Sen. Mullin. “While Oklahoma families are struggling to put food on the table, Joe Biden’s EPA is regulating entrepreneurs out of existence and setting new rules that will send meat and poultry prices through the roof.”

Regan appeared before the Senate Environment and Public Works Committee during a hearing on the agency’s proposed Fiscal Year 2025 budget.

Sen. Mullin used it as an opportunity to criticize Regan and the Biden White House about EPA rules that are putting some industry related firms out of business.

” Industry has bent over backwards to meet regulatory standards, but the EPA would rather move the goal post and ignore private industry’s successes in effluent limitation mitigation than communicate with America’s farmers and ranchers. We must hold the EPA accountable to the American people,” he said during the hearing.

In his questioning, Mullin, the Ranking Member of the Chemical Safety, Waste Management, Environmental Justice, and Regulatory Oversight Subcommittee, highlighted how the EPA’s proposed rule on Effluent Limitation Guidelines (ELG) on Meat & Poultry Products directly contradicts this administration’s goal to create a more resilient meat and poultry supply chain.

As a fourth-generation cow-calf rancher, Mullin knows firsthand the negative impact new burdensome regulations will have on not only the country’s food supply and consumer costs, but also the economic prosperity of Oklahoma’s farmers, growers, and producers.

Click here to watch the full video of Mullin’s remarks.

Highlighted quotes:

MULLIN: “By your own admittance, this [new proposed rule] is going to cause some plants to close. Is that good for the industry? On the other hand, you talked about wanting to have a more resilient meat and poultry supply chain. How is this new proposed rule that you guys are running towards on your options for ELG, how is this positive for the cattle market? How is this positive for consumers when you see protein already spiking at higher prices than we have never seen in the history of the United States? How is this positive for the consumer and how is it a positive move for the EPA to be making?”

“Hasn’t industry done a tremendous job already changing some of their discharge? They have gone a long way in where they were at 50 years ago to where they are at today and it’s still not good enough. So, are you really listening to them?”

“This is going to affect the entire industry. This is going to add a tremendous amount of cost to every dinner plate, every breakfast plate, and every sandwich served…This is going to add costs and you know it.”

“How do you explain this to the people right now that are struggling to put protein on their plates…knowing this is going to add costs. Industry is predicting this could add 15-20 percent cost to protein so, how can you say this is a positive move for the country?”