EPA Must Stop Cutting Corners on Science

I urged the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to commit to using sound science in regulatory decisions after it was revealed that the EPA’s independent Science Advisory Board Work Group questioned the EPA’s rush to regulate greenhouse gases on new power plants. The EPA’s own independent advisory board believes further review is necessary, not just on the standards but also on the underlying science. What’s even more troubling is that this isn’t the first time we’ve seen EPA cutting corners on science.

Last month when I questioned Administrator Gina McCarthy on the examples EPA is using to justify the commercial feasibility of their New Source Performance Standards for power plants, she admitted that the technology has yet to be adequately demonstrated full-scale at existing plants. And the partial examples the EPA cites in support of the rule are federally-funded CCPI projects, not commercial ventures, which is clearly prohibited by law.

The bipartisan Energy Policy Act of 2005 was designed to prevent the EPA from using federally funded projects to show technology was ready for prime time in the commercial marketplace. Without consideration for the law, the EPA is doing just that – and rushing forward with a rule that isn’t vetted by experts, based science that isn’t reviewed, and technology that isn’t proven.

This is an incredibly costly rule that could affect American electricity prices for generations to come.I can’t emphasize enough how important it is that we base this decision on sound science.

House Science Committee Chairman Lamar Smith sent a letter to EPA Administrator McCarthy this week, raising concerns with EPA’s rush to regulate greenhouse gases on new power plants.

I was pleased that Chairman Smith raised these issues. With American jobs at stake, we can’t afford to let the EPA put politics before good policy.


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