The Environmental Protection Agency on Wednesday held a daylong hearing in Arlington, Va., on its proposed rule to use Clean Air Act authority to control greenhouse gas emissions from large industrial producers. The NAM’s Bryan Brendle, director of Energy and Resources Policy, represented the National Association of Manufacturers. From his testimony:
EPA’s Strategy Has Legal Flaws, Creates Uncertainty
The EPA is entering uncertain legal territory by proposing to regulate very large facilities at the 25,000 ton per year (TPY) emissions level for GHGs under programs that federal law requires to be regulated at the 100 – 250 TPY level. At the same time, EPA proposes to establish a process by which it will consider ways to regulate even smaller sources, therefore laying the groundwork for even greater expansion of its regulatory power. Furthermore, litigation offers another avenue to regulation of small and mid-sized manufacturers as litigants force EPA to adhere to the requirements of federal law. The CAA [Clean Air Act] does not allow EPA unilaterally to raise the PSD threshold, because the CAA explicitly states that PSD includes “any. . . source with the potential to emit two hundred and fifty tons per year or more of any air pollutant.” 42 U.S.C. § 7479(1). To add to the uncertainty, the tailoring proposal also allows
states to move forward with more stringent permitting requirements, which would lead to the creation of a patchwork of state regulatory programs, leading to compliance obstacles for what would amount to first-time regulations.
Brendle’s complete statement is here.
The second day of hearings is under way in Rosemont, Ill. The EPA has provided a list of speakers. For more on this executive branch agency’s attempt circumvent the policy-making branch of government through regulation, see the EPA’s New Source Review page.
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