Possibly bowing to congressional pressure, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency said on Aug. 23 that it will delay until October its implementation of tougher ground-level ozone rules for powerplants. “We are continuing to carefully consider the proposed options” and public comment received since the rules were proposed in January, EPA said in a statement. The rules had been set to take effect on September 1. But several U.S. senators, citing economic hardships, opposed the new emissions standards in an Aug. 6 letter to EPA Administrator Lisa Jackson. The new rules would further tighten limits on sulfur dioxide and nitrogen oxide
The market is generally healthy and steadily growing, and margins are up for large specialty contractors. Further, advances in design tools and owner demand for collaboration are giving subcontractors a seat at the table early on in projects.