Senate votes to kill Obama climate rules

The battle to save the coal industry by blocking the EPA's new rules on carbon emissions switched to the Senate yesterday and resulted in a victory.

The vote - 52-46 -  was largely symbolic because the president has indicated he will veto the legislation and supporters do not have anywhere near the 66 votes necessary to override Obama's action. But the fight against these rules is also happening in federal court  where there is a better chance to defeat the plans of the president.

The Hill:

“If the administration’s proposed Clean Power Plan moves forward, hardship will be felt all across the country. Fewer job opportunities, higher power bills, and less reliable electricity will result,” Sen. Shelley Moore Capito (W.Va.), who sponsored the legislation on the existing plant rule out of concern for West Virginia’s coal-dependent economy, said on the Senate floor.

“Congress should pass this resolution and place this critical issue squarely on the president’s desk,” she said. “America’s economic future is at stake here, and it is time to send a clear signal that enough is enough.”

Sen. Heidi Heitkamp (D-N.D.), who also sponsored the Capito’s resolution, said the EPA’s rule threatens to harm electricity reliability so much that Americans could not be sure their lights would turn on.

“The one thing that we do is that when you reach over to turn on a light switch in the United States of America, the lights come on. And it doesn’t matter what time of the day,” she said, adding that the EPA rule makes that harder.

The White House said Obama would veto the measures, saying they would threaten billions of dollars of benefits to public health and the environment from the regulations.

“Most importantly, the resolution would impede efforts to reduce carbon pollution from existing power plants — the largest source of carbon pollution in the country — when the need to act, and to act quickly, to mitigate climate change impacts on American communities has never been more clear,” the White House said of the existing plant measure, with a similar statement on the other resolution.

The administration has already said that whatever is decided in Paris next month will be implemented by the US -wiithout Senate approval if necessary. So striking down these regulations takes on a new urgency as the president races the clock to implement them before he leaves office.

In Paris, the US is expected to pledge reduction in carbon emissions of up to 28% over the next 10 years using 2005 as a baseline. If that sounds like a lot, you're right. If implemented it would suck the vitality out of the economy. It isn't just the loss of jobs and economic activity. The carbon regime would prevent the creation of hundreds of thousands of jobs and thousands of new businesses. 

I guess the president wants us to get used to living with his failed economic policies that have resulted in the slowest growth of GDP since the 1970.s  


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