Barack Obama has finally realized his goal of bringing Americans together. There is widespread agreement that Clean Power Plan will destroy jobs, drive up the cost of goods, and increase income inequality.
The plan is the centerpiece of his Climate Action Plan. It was announced in June 2013, and complies with his more recent pledge to the U.N. that the U.S. will cut its carbon emissions by as much as 28% from 2005 levels by 2025.
The plan is a disaster on so many levels, the most important of which is that it will kill jobs (and the U.S. labor participation rate is already at disastrously low levels). The U.S. economy will find it hard recover from these regulations. The EPA rule is looking to replace cheap energy with more expensive alternate energy, which will not only raise the cost of energy for the individual households but the cost of goods for companies marketing their products. The result will be higher costs all products, but especially staple goods, for consumers.
The Washington Examiner reports that over half of the states are suing to prevent implementation of this oppressive rule:
Twenty-six states’ attorneys general and utility regulators, as of Monday, are suing the administration, with 15 trade groups, labor unions and a host of individual utilities and companies.
Oklahoma and North Dakota are the latest states to file lawsuits after a 24-state coalition on Friday sued the Environmental Protection Agency over its Clean Power Plan, which seeks to cut greenhouse gas emissions from existing power plants. The rules were published in the Federal Register on Friday, making them challengeable in federal appeals court.
The Clean Power Plan is a key part of the White House’s push to secure a global climate change deal at a meeting in Paris that begins Nov. 30. The rules seek to reduce greenhouse gas emissions from fossil fuels, such as coal, that many scientists say are harming the Earth’s climate.
The Wall Street Journal warned that the Clean Power Plan was going to hurt people all over the country:
If the EPA succeeds, Americans will be paying for decades. NERA Economic Consulting estimates that the Clean Power Plan will cost $366 billion and bring double-digit electricity-rate increases to 43 states. Regulators including the North American Electric Reliability Corporation warn that the plan could weaken the reliability of the national electric grid by forcing many power plants to close well before new ones can be built. Yet even the administration admits that the EPA plan will have only a trivial impact on the climate.
Another study, this one commissioned by the National Black Chamber of Commerce and published this past June predicts the new regulation will leave minority communities with disproportionately fewer jobs, lower incomes, and higher poverty rates than white communities. In other words the income disparity that progressives like to complain about (but has grown since Obama became president) will get even wider as the Clean Power Plan is implemented.
The U.S. Chamber of Commerce on Monday underscored the unprecedented number of lawsuits opposing the Clean Power Plan “as an aggressive restructuring” of the the U.S. energy system, overstepping the agency’s authority under the Clean Air Act.
States, led by West Virginia, on Friday filed a lawsuit with 23 other states, which began the march of opposition to the climate rules. Those states are: Texas, Alabama, Arkansas, Colorado, Florida, Georgia, Indiana, Kansas, Kentucky, Louisiana, Michigan, Missouri, Montana, Nebraska, New Jersey, Ohio, South Carolina, South Dakota, Utah, Wisconsin, Wyoming, the Arizona Corporations Commission and the North Carolina Department of Environmental Quality. North Dakota and Oklahoma filed soon after with individual lawsuits.
The rationale behind the suits is that the Clean Power rule goes beyond the EPA’s authority, violates states’ rights, and is unconstitutional. The U.S. Chamber of Commerce lawsuit is similar but adds that the climate rule will drive up the cost of doing business for nearly every sector in the nation.
It seems that the progressives who claim to have the middle class and poor uppermost in their mind should be the first to run, not walk, away from this effort, which endangers the economic health of those Americans.
Cross-posted at The Lid