House Cuts EPA Budget, Would Block Clean Power Plan

Published August 19, 2015

The House Appropriations committee cut funding for the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) by 9 percent, or $718 million, and blocked key Obama administration climate rules when they approved a $30.17 billion Interior and Environment spending bill. 

The Hill quoted committee Chairman Hal Rogers (R-KY), saying, “This administration has been hell-bent on implementing all sorts of regulations that are harmful to both our economy and our energy security. Bill-wide, we have included several important policy provisions aimed to stop this sort of overzealous bureaucratic red tape.” 

Rogers wasn’t the only House Republican with strong words for the administration. According to The Hill Rep. Ken Calvert (R-Calif.), chairman of the Appropriations Committee’s interior and environment subcommittee, said, “This administration’s appetite for new regulations and disregard for Congress has left us little choice but to block the president’s overzealous regulatory agenda in this bill.” 

Governors Need Not Comply

Among other provisions, the House bill allows state governors opt out of complying with the EPA’s clean power plan finalized on August 3 if they determine it would harm electricity rates, reliability or important economic sectors in the states.

The bill, passed 247-180, and, if it becomes law, will be a major blow to President Obama’s climate change agenda.

Rep. Pete Olson (R-Texas) told The Hill, “[The EPA] picked up a shotgun and pointed it at the heart of the American economy, our power generation.”

The CPP requires states to cut carbon dioxide emissions from their electric power sector by a nationwide average of 32 percent below 2005 levels by 2030.

Kenneth Artz ([email protected]) is a research fellow at The Heartland Institute.