Your life: Now worth $1 million less

If you're American, your life has dropped in value by about a million dollars, according to the Environmental Protection Agency. It has estimated that the "value of a statistical life" is now $6.9 million, or a million less than five years ago.

Why this matters?

"When drawing up regulations, government agencies put a value on human life and then weigh the costs versus the lifesaving benefits of a proposed rule," ABC News reports. "The less a life is worth to the government, the less the need for a regulation, such as tighter restrictions on pollution."

The downgrading in your worth, some say, has to do with a Bush Administration, which is trying to avoid stricter regulations:
"It appears that they're cooking the books in regards to the value of life," said S. William Becker, executive director of the National Association of Clean Air Agencies, which represents state and local air pollution regulators. "Those decisions are literally a matter of life and death."

Dan Esty, a senior EPA policy official in the administration of the first President Bush and now director of the Yale Center for Environmental Law and Policy, said: "It's hard to imagine that it has other than a political motivation."
The administration denies it.

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