Tuesday, September 02, 2014

Brownback fumes over new EPA rules

By The Herald Staff | 6/2/2014

TOPEKA — Gov. Sam Brownback criticized new federal Environmental Protection Agency regulations on power plants Monday, accusing President Obama’s administration of waging a “war on middle America.”

Brownback leveled the charge Monday after the EPA proposed regulations to cut carbon pollution from the nation’s power plants 30 percent by 2030.

TOPEKA — Gov. Sam Brownback criticized new federal Environmental Protection Agency regulations on power plants Monday, accusing President Obama’s administration of waging a “war on middle America.”

Brownback leveled the charge Monday after the EPA proposed regulations to cut carbon pollution from the nation’s power plants 30 percent by 2030.

“This is more of the Obama Administration’s war against middle America ... more cost and more regulation,” Brownback said. “We need Kansas solutions for Kansans.”

The Kansas Corporation Commission conducted a study, he said, and found that Kansans are paying an extra $227 million a year — a 9.4 percent increase since 2007 — to pay for what he called “Obama’s overregulation of energy producers.”

“Today’s news that the EPA will be imposing even more expensive regulations on Kansas utilities, and doing so without approval from Congress, is very troubling as it further disrupts the balance that must be achieved between protecting the environment and growing the economy,” Brownback said.

“Furthermore, these regulations will continue to raise the cost of living for every Kansan, making the burden on those who are already struggling to pay their bills each month unnecessarily more difficult,” Brownback said. “Kansas has been working hard to do its part to protect the environment by supporting clean coal technologies at the new plant in Holcomb, as well as diversifying our energy portfolio with wind and natural gas.”

Along with the 30-percent cut of the nation’s carbon pollution, the EPA’s plan aims to cut particle pollution, nitrogen oxides, and sulfur dioxide by more than 25 percent as a co-benefit; avoid up to 6,600 premature deaths, up to 150,000 asthma attacks in children, and up to 490,000 missed work or school days — providing up to $93 billion in climate and public health benefits, and shrink electricity bills roughly 8 percent by increasing energy efficiency and reducing demand in the electricity system, according to a blog by the EPA administrator.

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