Insight Online News
Washington, May 12 : A senator who represents West Virginia, one of the largest coal mining states in the US, vowed to issue a formal challenge to the Biden administration’s new emissions requirements that threaten the existence of coal and gas-fired power plants across the country.
Earlier in the day, the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) unveiled new pollution standards that will require fossil fuel-fired power plants to reduce emissions by up to 90 percent by 2030 or shut down, according to an analysis by Scientific American magazine.
“The Clean Power Plan 2.0 announced today is the Biden administration’s most blatant attempt yet to close down power plants and kill American energy jobs. The EPA has already tried this illegal overreach, which was ultimately overturned by the Supreme Court, but not before it devastated communities in West Virginia and across the country,” Senator Shelley Moore Capito said in a statement on Thursday. “I plan to introduce a Congressional Review Act resolution of disapproval to protect workers and families from the disastrous impacts of these latest job-killing regulations.”
West Virginia Attorney General Patrick Morrisey said the rule appears to “utterly fly in the face of the rule of law.” The US Supreme Court, the official said in a press release, has placed significant limits on what the EPA can do and he plans on ensuring that “those limits are upheld.”
Chris Hamilton, President and CEO of the West Virginia Coal Association, said the rule is specifically designed to shut down the state’s power plants.
“What EPA is doing is economic suicide. West Virginians will lose jobs. Americans will continue to pay increasingly more expensive power bills. Our nation’s electric system will become even more unreliable. And energy security in the United States will become more dependent on foreign countries and potentially foreign adversaries,” Hamilton said in a press release. “Ideology doesn’t manufacture megawatts. Coal does.”
On Wednesday, Senator Joe Manchin, also from West Virginia, ahead of the proposal’s unveiling said he would oppose every single one of President Joe Biden’s EPA nominees until this “government overreach” is halted.
The EPA said the proposal would avoid up to 617 million metric tons of total carbon dioxide (CO2) through 2042, equivalent to cutting the annual emissions of 137 million passenger vehicles – or half the cars in the US.