Transparency is in short supply in the world of regulation. How many rules does an agency have in the pipeline? How much will they cost? How much does the total stock of rules currently in effect cost, and how many are there? Some of these questions can’t be answered. The data for others are available, but scattered across different sources and dfficult to assemble.
There is a solution: each agency should have an annual regulatory report card that puts all this disparate information into one publicly accessible document. Agencies should already be doing this themselves, but aren’t.
That’s why, to set a good example, with plenty of help from my CEI colleagues, I put together just such a report card for the EPA. In it, you’ll find out that the best available estimate of the EPA’s total cost is $353 billion, which is more than Denmark’s entire 2011 GDP. You’ll also find out that the Code of Federal Regulations contains as many as 154,350 individual regulatory restrictions — just in the Title concerning environmental protection.
For all that important information and more, read the EPA Regulatory Report Card here.