Environmental groups are threatening the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) with a lawsuit that could result in additional regulations for boatbuilders.
Soundings Trade Only reported that the Sierra Club and California Communities Against Air Toxics said in an Aug. 26 letter recently posted to the EPA’s website that the agency failed to review toxics standards for 46 industries, including the marine industry, as required by the Clean Air Act of 1990.
According to the law, the EPA had eight years after finalizing the boatbuilder Maximum Achievable Control Technology in 2001 to perform the assessment, called a residual risk review, according to the National Marine Manufacturers Association.
The agency has yet to conduct reviews of several industries because of staffing issues, and more recently because of sequestration and budget cuts, NMMA director of environmental and safety compliance John McKnight told Trade Only Today.
“Clearly they have failed in what they were required to do under the law, so I anticipate that the courts will order them to do it,” McKnight told Soundings Trade Only.
It will take time for the matter to work its way through the court system, McKnight says.
“It’s something we need to follow closely, but it won’t be something that we need to react to immediately,” McKnight said. “But it’s important that boatbuilders are notified because … it’s going to come and, when it comes, it’s going to be a big deal.”
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There were 1,400 stories about boating and the boating lifestyle in media outlets last year prompted by the efforts of Discover Boating, the group said after its 2012 tally of press coverage.
Soundings Trade Only reported that the coverage provided an estimated 110 million media impressions, the group announced.
Just three weeks into 2013, the public relations team of the National Marine Manufacturers Association (NMMA) — the group that manages the national Discover Boating campaign — had secured 381 positive news stories about the marine industry, the lifestyle and shows.
“Public relations has been a significant element of Discover Boating and NMMA marketing efforts because it allows us to tell the boating story through a variety of media and communicate directly with the public in a meaningful way,” NMMA vice president of marketing Ellen Hopkins told Soundings Trade Only in an e-mail.
Discover Boating had success pitching a variety of topics, from “Top 10 Boating Destinations” to “How to Get Started,” Hopkins said.
“One of the areas discussed at length during the Growth Summit was the need to improve the sharing of information, resources and successes across the broader industry,” Hopkins told Trade Only in an email.
“With Discover Boating and NMMA public relations specifically, there’s a lot of great work being done behind the scenes that sometimes only a board of directors knows about.”