PARKERSBURG - U.S. Sen. Joe Manchin, D-W.Va., has joined 43 Republican senators signing onto legislation stripping the Environmental Protection Agency's authority to regulate greenhouse gas emissions
Senate Bill 482, introduced by Sen. Jim Inhofe, R-Okla., would amend the Clean Air Act and prohibit the Environmental Protection Agency from making or enforcing regulations on the emission of a greenhouse gas. Similar legislation, House Resolution 910, was also introduced in the House and sponsored by Rep. Fred Upton, R-Mich., and cosponsored by nine representatives including Rep. Nick Joe Rahall, D-W.Va.
Manchin was the only Democrat in the Senate to be a cosponsor.
"It's time that the EPA realizes it cannot regulate what has not been legislated. Our government was designed so that elected representatives are in charge of making important decisions, not bureaucrats," Manchin said. "That principle is even more essential when policies affect our whole country and could hurt our fragile economy."
The EPA has announced it will begin phasing in greenhouse gas permitting requirements for large, new and modified plants that are sources of pollution.
Regulations also will be enacted on emissions standards for refineries and power plants, of which most are coal-fired in America.
The coal industry and other industrial organizations are opposed. The National Petrochemical and Refiners Association this week said the regulation of greenhouse gas emissions could cause the closure of many refineries, cost hundreds of thousands of jobs and further economically weaken the country and national security.
"The simple fact is that the EPA is trying to seize more power than it should have, and must be stopped," Manchin said. "I hope that Democrats and Republicans can come together to stop the EPA's jobs-destroying power grab."