Saturday, January 09, 2010

Congressman Pomeroy Seeks To Limit EPA on Climate

Congressman Earl Pomeroy (R-ND), left, is introducing legislation (Save Our Energy Jobs Act, H.R. 4396) that would effectively reverse the Supreme Court’s 2007 ruling declaring that the Clean Air Act can be used by EPA to regulate greenhouse gases. Senator Lisa Murkowski (R-Alaska) is introducing legislation similar to Congressman Pomeroy's in the form of a Motion of Disapproval in the U.S. Senate later this month.

The House passed climate change legislation (Waxman/Markey) 219-212 in June and similar legislation is currently pending in the U.S. Senate (Boxer/Kerry).

The Obama administration and Congress prefer Congressional legislation to address carbon dioxide (CO2) limits compared to unilateral use of the Clean Air Act by EPA to regulate CO2 and other greenhouse gases. The EPA and Department of Transportation (DOT) are considering greenhouse gas emission standards for cars and trucks. The EPA issued a finding that CO2 and other greenhouse gases pose a risk to human health on December 7, 2009. The Center agrees with the Obama administration that Congress should pass climate change legislation. The Center supports the House and Senate cap-and-trade legislation with the caveat that allowances should be allocated free to major emitters. In addition, anyone should be allowed to hold and trade allowances and offsets.

The EPA’s decision stems from a 1999 complaint filed by environmental and renewable energy organizations. In 2007, the U.S. Supreme Court ruled that carbon dioxide and other greenhouse gases are air pollutants under the Clean Air Act and that the EPA must explore if they threaten public health. EPA issued an "Endangerment Finding" and "Tailoring Rule" in response to the Supreme Court decision. Fuel economy is regulated by DOT and EPA's findings will support gasoline mileage standards. (Congressman Earl Pomeroy Pomeroy,, 1/8/10, photo courtesy AP Photo/Dale Wetzel)

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