Tuesday, December 20, 2016

Is This the End of Obama's EPA Legacy?

by William F. Shughart II and Michael Jensen (The Detroit News, 12/13/16)

President-elect Donald Trump’s decision to pick Oklahoma Attorney General Scott Pruitt to lead the Environmental Protection Agency indicates that Trump intends to dismantle President Barack Obama’s environmental legacy.   Writers at the Environmental Defense Fund have criticized Pruitt for his ties to fossil fuel interests, implying that placing him in EPA’s top spot would be like putting a fox in charge of the hen house. Nevertheless, Trump is motivated by the belief that EPA needs to “refocus.”

As Obama was running for the White House eight years ago, he said that his environmental plan would make electricity rates “skyrocket.” During his time as president, the EPA has loosed a series of regulations that not only lay the groundwork for higher electricity prices but that have cost tens of thousands of people their livelihoods.

Last month, a District Court judge reprimanded EPA for failing to comply with a requirement in the Clean Air Act mandating that it estimate the number of jobs lost as a result of environmental regulations. Over the last few years, EPA Administrator Gina McCarthy responded to requests for such job-loss estimates by stating that those calculations were not done because they are of “limited utility.”

To whom, one might ask? EPA’s bureaucrats, obviously........To Read More.....

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