Michigan Attorney General Mike Cox was outnumbered among witnesses at last week’s hearing by the Senate Environment and Public Works Committee on California’s request for an EPA waiver so the state could regulate vehicle emissions for carbon dioxide. Although a believe in state prerogatives, Cox argued that the EPA was correct to deny the waiver request, because global warming should be regulated at the federal level.
Allowing California, and the other states that adopt its regulations, to impose what will become the de facto national standard contravenes principles of federalism and undermines the possibility for our Nation to speak and act with one voice in addressing this global problem. California’s proposed regulation will not be effective in controlling national or international emissions because it only addresses a small part of the total national and worldwide emissions – again, auto emissions are less than a third of the U.S. greenhouse gas emissions and 7% of the worldwide emissions. Further, the proposed California waiver fails to engage in any meaningful analysis of the costs of such regulation.
Cox argued that the proposed regulations would deal a crushing blow to Michigan’s already struggling economy.
Different data has been reported related to how many jobs will be lost under the California plan, but all indicate there will be job losses. Data from those in the best position to judge, the Nation’s auto companies, indicates the net job loss would range from 60,000 to 100,000 jobs; and because Michigan has 22% of the nation’s auto manufacturing jobs, our burden would be even greater – which would truly create “compelling and extraordinary conditions” in my State.
Cox’s testimony is available here. No analysis, but devastating economic effects? California’s waiver request is an astonishing example of regulatory overreach.
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