Kristina Baum- 202.224.6176
Donelle Harder - 202.224.1282    
Chairman Inhofe's Calls for State Oversight Hearings on EPA's Proposed CO2 Emissions Rules

WASHINGTON, DC - U.S. Sen. Jim Inhofe (R-Okla.), chairman of the U.S. Senate Environment and Public Works (EPW) Committee, released the following statement after today's full committee oversight hearing examining the Environment Protection Agency's (EPA) proposed carbon dioxide emission rules for new, modified, and existing power plants:

"Today's hearing made it abundantly clear that EPA does not intend to take responsibility for the consequences of their proposed climate rules. Acting Assistant Administrator Janet McCabe appeared unconcerned when she told the committee that some plants will not be able to achieve the mandates that would be imposed under the proposed rules, but she does not know which power plants will be forced to close. Her comments throughout the hearing made it clear that states and industry, and not the EPA, will be left holding the bag when EPA's new mandates force actions that will increase electricity costs for our citizens while reducing the reliability of our electric grid. The hearing also highlighted the fact that EPA has failed to hold any public meetings on the proposals in West Virginia, a state that will be significantly impacted by the rules and is less than 70 miles from EPA's headquarters. This makes it all the more appropriate that the first EPW field hearing in the 114th Congress will further examine these regulations and will be chaired by Sen. Shelley Moore Capito in her home state of West Virginia."

"Last summer, McCabe stated the climate rules were about pollution control, however today, she stated the ‘design of the rule is to address a mix of energy in each state.' This only confirms what EPA Administrator Gina McCarthy said in July before this committee that, ‘this is not about pollution control,' but instead it is about ‘investments in renewables and clean energy.' These proposals are proof the EPA is attempting to unlawfully dictate how states manage their energy resources. To quote U.S. Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia's 2014 opinion in UARG v. EPA, these rules would be another ‘enormous and transformative expansion in EPA's regulatory authority without clear congressional authorization.' Justice Scalia went on to say, ‘when an agency claims to discover in a long-extant statute an unheralded power to regulate ‘a significant portion of the American economy,' we typically greet its announcement with a measure of skepticism.' My colleagues and I share that skepticism.

"McCabe's responses in today's hearing raised more questions than they answered. She also failed to provide a justification for finalizing rules that have received more than five million comments, are opposed by a majority of states, and fail to take substantive action on the president's global warming goals. The next step the EPW committee will take on these proposals will be to hear from states as we continue to shed light on the destructive nature of the Obama Administration's climate regulations."