EPA pushes ahead to kill energy industry

July 7, 2010 07:12

Industry groups said new rules will boost power prices and force many older coal-fired power plants to be closed. Remember, Obama said ‘Under my plan electricity rates will necessarily skyrocket’.

By Matthew Daly ASSOCIATED PRESS via Washington Times

The Obama administration is proposing a new rule to tighten restrictions on pollution from coal-burning power plants in the eastern half of the country, a move environmental groups claim is a key step to cutting emissions that cause smog.

The Environmental Protection Agency said Tuesday the new rule represented its most far-reaching effort yet to curb pollution that contributes to smog and soot hanging over more than half the country. The rule would cost nearly $3 billion a year and those costs are likely to be passed along to consumers, although the rule’s effect on specific companies and on consumers was not clear.

The rule would also overturn and toughen rules issued during the administration of former President George W. Bush. The Obama administration has pursued changes in policy through EPA rules even as it lobbies Congress to pass a comprehensive climate-control bill.

“We believe that today is marking a large and important step in EPA‘s effort to protect public health,” said the agency‘s top air pollution official, Gina McCarthy.

The rule, to be put in final form next year, aims to cut sulfur dioxide emissions by 71 percent from 2005 levels by 2014 and nitrogen oxide emissions by 52 percent in the same time frame.


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