The PJ Tatler

EPA hails new regulations as a huge win...for the EPA

From Politico’s Morning Energy:

EPA will roll out a major rule to slash air pollution from utilities in the next four days, if the agency makes good on its promised timeline. EPA air chief Gina McCarthy said recently that the so-called transport rule was on track to be issued by the end of June. Under the draft rule, power plants in 31 states and the District of Columbia would be forced to cut emissions that contribute to ozone and fine particle pollution in downwind states. The draft: http://1.usa.gov/m89qff

McCarthy said the rule will mark a “huge win,” for the EPA and stakeholders and called it an opportunity “for a gigantic do-over” from the George W. Bush administration’s Clean Air Interstate Rule, which was tossed out in 2008 by a federal appeals court. Some in industry will beg to differ, and lobbyists have flooded into the White House in recent weeks to weigh in on the proposal.

Forgive me if I don’t celebrate a “huge win” for an untamed bureaucracy that has gone power mad in the Obama years, and which is likely to cost thousands of jobs. The EPA is threatening power plants and fuel sources, and may end up stifling a building oil boom which would help lower energy prices. That in turn would stimulate the economy. But the EPA is more interested in its administrative “win” than in getting out of the way of the US economy.

The EPA’s logic here is Exhibit A in why we need to sunset federal agencies. Once they get set up, agencies tend to grow territorial and then to become a shade tyrannical. Congress doesn’t seem to be a reliable check on their mission creep, and this president is investing federal agencies with more and more power so they might serve his overall agenda of “fundamental transformation.”