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No ‘free rein’ for the EPA


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211098-no-free-rein-for-the-epaThe Hill/Congress Blog:

Peter Glaser

July 2 2014


The U.S. Supreme Court has overturned a centerpiece of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) strategy to regulate greenhouse gas emissions under the Clean Air Act, clearly reining in the agency from what has become a pattern of regulatory overreach. This will prove to be a heavy blow to the EPA’s future plans to regulate carbon.


The Court overturned the EPA’s Tailoring Rule this past week, which was a truly breathtaking example of the EPA’s efforts to change the law to suit its agenda. The Clean Air Act requires that facilities that release certain thresholds of pollutants obtain a permit, depending on the type of facility. Congress established these levels so that only large industrial and manufacturing plants would need permits.


But when the EPA began regulating carbon, it ran into a problem. According to agency figures, more than 6 million buildings and facilities potentially would now need permits. This included schools, churches, apartment buildings and everything in between, which even the EPA recognized would be absurd.



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