This is low hanging fruit. Here’s a guy (one Phil Kerpen) claiming on a Fox outlet that economic prosperity alone led to better air, water, and soil over the past 40 years. So we really don’t need EPA or regulations. This kind of claptrap just doesn’t cut it.
The counter-arguments are obvious. Look at China. Lot’s of prosperity these days, but huge pollution problems because of poor regulations and lack of implementation of the regulations they do have.
Further, when EPA and accompanying legislation came into being, we had rivers on fire, for goodness’ sake. This, despite many years of economic prosperity following World War II. Our rivers and streams did not come back to where they are without massive infusions of federal money to build wastewater treatment plants. (And our surface and ground waters still have a long way to go in terms of necessary water quality improvements.)
Companies simply don’t do pollution control unless they must. It just does not help their bottom line. Kerpen and his buddies would not be breathing clean air and drinking safe water without EPA and regulations.