— U.S. Senator Shelley Moore Capito (R-W.Va.), Ranking Member of the Environment and Public Works (EPW) Committee, today participated in a nominations hearing of Christopher Frey to be Assistant Administrator for Research and Development at the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and Jennifer Clyburn Reed to be Federal Co-Chair of the Southeast Crescent Regional Commission.


BANNING TAILGATING? “Dr. Frey, when we talked on the phone last week, I hit you with a surprise, I think. I’m going to talk about the 2019 research paper of which you were one of many authors on college football tailgating that laid out the ideal situation of college football tailgating, which would be a ‘ban on idling, charcoal grills, and old generators.’ Well, we decided this was not realistic, and you did tell me you grill out at least three times a week and you are fuel agnostic. So, thank you for clarifying that world-changing research paper.”  

SUPPORTING THE OVERREACHING CLEAN POWER PLAN: “You wrote a letter to the editor published in the Raleigh News & Observer, titled Taking on Clean Power Plan Claims. In the letter, you disputed assertions that the Clean Power Plan was an ‘act of overreach.’ You’re going to be dealing with this and I would imagine asked to do research in this area. As we all know, the Clean Power Plan has fallen, and there is speculation that there’s going to be something come in to fill the space. Do you believe EPA acted within its statutory authority when it issued the Clean Power Plan? Should EPA use the Clean Air Act to regulate a power plant’s carbon dioxide emissions outside the fence line?”

PRIORITIZING NEEDS: “You mentioned the persistent poverty counties, 92 counties. You’re going to have to prioritize. Is that how you would prioritize in terms of the lowest poverty? I would recommend that myself. Start with the place you can really make improvements on…How would you attack that kind of economic development issues?”

NEW REGULATIONS: “Joe Goffman – the current, unconfirmed head of the air office – has said that the administration is working on an ‘initiative’ regarding the power sector. So, that leaves us all to guess what is that? It could be a suite of regulations – the sum total of which would drive down carbon dioxide emissions by squeezing the power sector through regulations on issues other than carbon dioxide. By regulating other types of emissions, water, and waste, the net effect would be to force coal – and perhaps natural gas – plants to reduce operations but possibly close. Are you aware of this initiative? Have you provided research assistance on this?”


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