Sen. Lisa Murkowski (R-AK) today introduced a bipartisan measure to prevent the Environmental Protection Agency from regulating greenhouse gas emissions under the Clean Air Act. From her news release, “Sen. Murkowski Offers Disapproval Resolution to Block EPA Endangerment of Economy“:
Murkowski’s resolution – co-sponsored by 35 Republicans and three Democrats – comes in the wake of the EPA’s recent endangerment finding, which will result in damaging new regulations that endanger America’s economy.
“As the EPA moves closer and closer to issuing these regulations, I continue to believe that this command-and-control approach is our worst option for reducing the emissions blamed for climate change,” Murkowski said.
EPA’s proposed rules are an attempt by the executive branch to supersede the legislative branch’s policymaking role in government, the kind of power play that lawmakers traditionally reject. Murkowski addresses that issue.
“Our bipartisan resolution deals with an incredibly important question: whether or not members of this body are comfortable with the actions EPA will take under its current interpretation of the Clean Air Act. I’m not comfortable with those actions, and neither are the senators who have already agreed to add their names to this effort,” Murkowski said. “The Clean Air Act was written by Congress to regulate criteria pollutants, not greenhouse gases, and its implementation remains subject to oversight and guidance from elected representatives. We should continue our work to pass meaningful energy and climate legislation, but in the meantime, we cannot turn a blind eye to the EPA’s efforts to impose back-door climate regulations with no input from Congress.”
Sen. Murkowski’s floor speech thoroughly examines the issues and notes the broad opposition from such groups as the American Farm Bureau Federation and the Small Business Administration’s Office of Advocacy.
Joining the Republicans are three Democrats, Ben Nelson of Nebraska, Mary Landrieu of Louisiana, and Blanche Lincoln of Arkansas. Sen. Lincoln said in a statement, “Heavy-handed EPA regulation, as well as the current cap and trade bills in Congress, will cost us jobs and put us at an even greater competitive disadvantage to China, India and others.”
Bipartisan and bicameral opposition, as well. Rep. Marsha Blackburn (R-TN) has introduced H.R. 391 to exempt greenhouse cases from Clean Air Act regulation. The bill has 151 cosponsors and Blackburn is seeking to have it dis charged from committee. Rep. Earl Pomeroy (D-ND) in December introduced H.R. 4396, to achieve the same goal through the language, “The term ‘air pollutant’ shall not include carbon dioxide, methane, nitrous oxide, hydrofluorocarbons, perfluorocarbons, or sulfur hexafluoride.” There are two cosponsors: Rep. Dan Boren (D-OK) and Rep. Jo Ann Emerson (R-MO).
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