Oklahoma officials are pushing back and assert that the finalization of the Clean Power Plan as announced by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) will not stand.
U.S. Sen. Jim Inhofe (R-Okla.), chairman of the U.S. Senate Environment and Public Works (EPW) Committee, released the most detailed statement Monday in response as Oklahoma Attorney General Scott Pruitt, Sen. James Lankford, Governor Mary Fallin and others take strong positions on Obama’s abusive environmental decree designed to rape the economy.
“The Environmental Protection Agency has managed to take a bad deal and make it worse. The Obama administration has no concern for costs, no concept of reality and no respect for Rule of Law. President Obama, and his EPA know that Americans do not support his costly carbon mandates, as most prominently on display when the U.S. Senate expressly rejected such an economically disastrous idea by failing to pass cap-and-trade legislation in 2009,” Sen. Inhofe said.
“EPA’s final rule will force Americans to replace dependable, affordable energy with high-cost, unreliable alternatives, and generations of energy consumers will be left footing the bill. The so-called Clean Power Plan (CPP) primarily relies on a federally mandated shift towards wind and solar which makes up less than five percent of our electricity grid and has taken our nation decades to achieve. Yet the CPP will demand Americans reduce its fossil fuel dependency until renewables are 28 percent of electricity production by 2030. This is unachievable without great economic pain, a burden President Obama thinks the American people should bear for the sake of his legacy.
“Despite the president’s rhetoric, the so-called Clean Power Plan will be most harmful to low-income and minority communities. Our seniors will be forced to choose between medical care and meals while paying for a multi-billion dollar rule that has no measurable impact on global warming. The final CPP makes clear that this administration is not concerned with economic upheaval or the longstanding legal consequences that threaten the fabric of our Constitution so long as the president’s reckless political agenda is advanced and legacy achieved.
“Under a new Republican majority, the Senate is ready to push back on these destructive regulations. My committee will begin by marking up S.1324, the Affordable Reliable Electricity Now Act sponsored by Clean Air Subcommittee Chairwoman Sen. Shelley Moore-Capito (R-W.Va.) and Sen. Joe Manchin (D-W.Va.) later this week so that it can be ready for full Senate action this fall,” Inhofe announced. “I am also working with Majority Leader Mitch McConnell on two Congressional Review Act Resolutions of Disapproval to overturn both the new and existing source rules.”
The American people and Congress have spoken out against the federal government regulating carbon emissions through the following votes:
• July 25, 1997, the Senate passed the Byrd-Hagel resolution unanimously with a vote of 95-0 state that it was not the sense of the Senate that the United States should be a signatory to the Kyoto protocol.
• Oct. 30, 2003, the Senate defeated the Lieberman-McCain Climate Stewardship Act, an effort to cap carbon emissions at the 2000 level, by a vote of 43 to 55.
• June 22, 2005, the Senate once again defeated the Lieberman-McCain Climate Stewardship Act, another attempt to impose mandatory caps on carbon, by a vote of 38-46.
• June 6, 2008, the Senate defeated the Warner-Lieberman Climate Security Act, to cap carbon emissions at 63 percent below 2005 levels by 2015, by a vote of 48-63.
• In 2009, the Waxman-Markey Clean Energy and Security Act, which would have established a variant of an emissions trading plan, was never brought up for a vote under a Democrat-controlled Congress.
Attorney General Scott Pruitt said the final version of the Clean Power Plan announced by the Administration is unlawful because the EPA does not have the legal authority under the Clean Air to regulate carbon emissions from the electricity generating plants covered by the final rule.
“The president could announce the most ‘state friendly’ plan possible, but it would not change the fact that the administration doesn’t have the legal authority under the Clean Air Act to regulate carbon emissions from these sources because these sources are already being regulated and the Act prohibits this sort of double regulation. The most important detail left out today, however, is the fact the Clean Power Plan threatens the reliability and affordability of power for consumers and business across this country. Oklahoma is suing the EPA over the Clean Power Plan because we are asking the federal government to comply with the Clean Air Act, not because we need more time and flexibility to implement this unlawful plan. My office will continue to challenge the EPA as long as the administration continues to pursue this unlawful rule,” Attorney General Pruitt said.
A lawsuit filed in federal district court by the state of Oklahoma challenges the EPA over the Clean Power Plan because it forces Oklahoma into fundamentally restructuring the generation, transmission, and regulation of electricity in such a manner that would threaten the reliability and affordability of power in the state.
Sen. James Lankford (R-OK) said, “The latest and final emissions rule for power plants released by the EPA has minimal environmental benefits with major economic repercussions to Americans. This regulation appears to be more messaging than solution, but the pain to the American consumer will be profound. The rule will slow ingenuity and Americans will notice the significant effect every month when they pay their utility bill. I will continue to work against this apparent overreach from the EPA.”
Governor Mary Fallin said, “President Obama’s ‘Clean Power Plan’ represents one of the most expansive and expensive regulatory burdens ever imposed on U.S. families and businesses.
“The EPA’s new rules will have minimal environmental benefits; they will, however, threaten our fuel diversity and lead to significant increases in utility costs across the country.
“Oklahoma Attorney General Scott Pruitt has been helping to lead the charge against the White House and the EPA’s overreach. I continue to support his efforts in the courtroom. Oklahoma, not the federal government, knows best how to protect our environment while also supporting our economy,” Fallin added.
John Tidwell, Americans for Prosperity Oklahoma also released a statement that reads in part, “All Oklahomans should be aware that utility bills are going to skyrocket in the coming years, but it’s not the rising costs of energy that’s doing it, but the Obama administration’s insatiable appetite for appeasing the environmental lobby. Americans for Prosperity Oklahoma has been on the front lines of the battle against an ever-growing EPA and we will continue to educate citizens on the importance of a free market.”