This commentary originally appeared in the Austin American-Statesman on May 5, 2015.
Recently, squabbles over which states intend to comply with the Clean Power Plan have emerged. The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, through the Clean Power Plan, seeks to extend its regulatory tentacles out to everything that has an effect on carbon dioxide emission. This would include a retail consumer who uses electricity from a power plant to charge his or her phone, watch TV, use the air conditioner – or worse yet, charge their electric car.
Supporters of the plan claim 41 states intend to comply, while opponents say 32 states will fight the EPA’s proposed rule. This argument is reminiscent of grade school pedantry. Regardless of which states will comply, the proposed rule is a breathtaking overreach of authority, unworkable and requires an overhaul of the nation’s electric grid.
Thompson is a policy analyst with the Armstrong Center for Energy & Environment at the Texas Public Policy Foundation.