Attorney General Cameron Leads 14-State Coalition Challenging the EPA’s Overregulation of Air Quality Standards

EPA’s Plan will Place Burdensome Requirements on Targeted Industries, Further Stress Power Grid

                                       

FRANKFORT, Ky. (June 22, 2022) – Attorney General Daniel Cameron today challenged the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) plan for regulating downwind emissions, arguing that the plan would place burdensome requirements on key industries and will lead to additional strain on the nation’s power grid.

“America has some of the cleanest air in the industrialized world, yet the Biden Administration’s EPA is proposing environmental standards that target new industries and further drive up the cost of electricity and could lead to increasing blackouts,” said Attorney General Cameron.  “These federal policies are being pushed at a time when Kentuckians are already experiencing record-high inflation and gas prices above five dollars per gallon.  Once again, the president is elevating the green priorities of a few at the expense of many, with potentially devastating consequences for American families, businesses, and our nation’s power grid.”

Attorney General Cameron led the letter to the EPA, which was joined by the attorneys general of 14 states and urges the agency to abandon a proposed Federal Implementation Plan.  The plan takes away the ability of states to monitor and control air quality standards in favor of a broad federal plan that empowers a massive and unresponsive federal agency in Washington to establish unprecedented regulatory control of emissions.  The plan also requires many states to implement draconian emissions cuts to meet the standards set forth in the EPA’s plan.

In the letter, the attorneys general write that the proposed federal plan will “be the death knell for certain industries already suffering in the current economy. For example, the plan is estimated to cause 18 gigawatts of coal-fired generation and 4 gigawatts of gas and oil-fired capacity to retire by 2030. This continued rush by EPA to retire EGUs [electric-generating units] in Kentucky and across the country will further stress the nation’s power grid, exacerbating the reliability, affordability, and resilience of the electricity supplied to homes and industry. Meanwhile, non-EGUs will be forced to develop or invest in expensive control equipment. This will severely impact the manufacturing industry’s ability to compete and will simply drive away jobs to countries whose air pollution track records fall far short of the United States.”

In addition to the letter sent by the attorneys general, the Utility Information Exchange of Kentucky (UIEK) separately filed comments opposing the federal plan.  In the comments, the organization also notes the harmful effects of the federal plan stating, “UIEK is very concerned with the proposed Good Neighbor FIP’s disconnect between energy supply, environmental compliance, and economic development in Kentucky. . . . This proposed rule would result in a capacity shortfall of over 3,600 MW of capacity in Kentucky and poses concerns for electricity availability, affordability, reliability, and economic development load growth as early as 2026.”

To read the letter sent by the attorneys general, click here. Attorney General Cameron led the letter and was joined by attorneys general from Alabama, Arkansas, Indiana, Louisiana, Mississippi, Montana, Ohio, Oklahoma, South Carolina, Texas, Utah, West Virginia, and Wyoming.

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