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EPA retains oversight of greenhouse gases

posted on April 8, 2011

Earlier this year, the Environmental Protection Agency, or EPA, gave a green light to all 2001 model-year and newer vehicles to use gasoline containing as much as 15 percent ethanol.

But House Republicans -- along with an increasing number of democrats -- say the EPA has become a "Rogue Agency," which poses a serious threat to the economic recovery. And GOP leaders have been working to dismantle environmental regulations they see as "job-killers."

That sentiment was readily apparent on Capitol Hill this week when House Republicans put the brakes on EPA's authority to regulate greenhouse gas emissions.

EPA retains oversight of greenhouse gases

The House approved a measure Thursday, stripping away EPA's authority to regulate greenhouse gases. An identical bill failed to win Senate approval earlier, effectively ending the chances of the bill advancing to President Obama's desk. The president had threatened to veto the legislation which republicans cited as a budget reduction measure.

Some House Republicans said EPA is overreaching its authority, especially under the Clean Air Act. The lawmakers specifically cite the agency's regulation of greenhouse gases, the cornerstone of their anti-regulatory campaign.

The chairman of the House Energy and Commerce Committee, Fred Upton of Michigan said, "this legislation will remove the biggest regulatory threat to the American economy."

The sentiment was echoed by a key Democrat. Ranking member of the House Ag committee, Collin Peterson of Minnesota said, "This bill hits the pause button on EPA's current efforts to regulate greenhouse gases. America's farmers and ranchers are committed to preserving our natural resources for the next generation, but what we're seeing from EPA could potentially interfere with conservation efforts already underway. EPA's regulations would not only make it harder for agriculture producers to meet increased demand but raise costs on all consumers. If Congress fails to act the economic effects could be devastating."

EPA also came under fire earlier this year when House Republicans tried denying funds designated for regulating greenhouse gases for the rest of the year.

Tags: biofuels Environmental Protection Agency government news pollution renewable fuels