Poor Example

Environmental Protection Agency proposals expected to be released next week are another case of the federal government not understanding the U.S. cannot force the rest of the world to follow its poor example; and not caring how many Americans it hurts while it flails.

Proposals that would reduce carbon emissions in the U.S. by 40 percent by 2030 would shut down one-third of current coal capacity, according to a U.S. Chamber of Commerce analysis of the plan. In the South Atlantic region, which includes Appalachia, that would mean a $10 billion hit to the economy with 60,000 jobs lost every year, according to Karen Harbert, president and CEO of the U.S. Chamber of Commerce Institute for 21st Century Energy.

And all that damage to the U.S. economy will do very little environmental good. In fact, it could do harm, as other countries witness the terrible effects of foolhardy environmental policy, and decide to do nothing at all.

“If we show what this does to our economy, is any other country going to want to follow us when they look at the type of job losses and economic losses? That would scare them into doing, probably, the exact opposite,” Harbert said.

Imagine, policies that would inflict $50 billion worth of damage per year on the U.S. economy, while doing more harm than good to the environment, which, the EPA apparently needs to be reminded, is global.

President Barack Obama says these new rules from his EPA are designed to slow climate change. It is dangerously irresponsible to implement policies based on the idea that China, India, Russia and Brazil, to name a few, will not jump at the opportunity to pump as much carbon into the atmosphere as they need to, in order to cash in on the strain the federal government is putting on the U.S. economy.