Wednesday, January 5, 2011

Court Blocks EPA From Controlling Texas GHG Regulations

The U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia has blocked until Friday the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency's (EPA) plan to seize control of greenhouse gas permits from Texas.

The first federal rules on emissions of carbon dioxide and other heat-trapping gases took effect Sunday. Texas is the only state to refuse to implement the new rules — a position that prompted the EPA's intervention.  In its petition, the state accuses the EPA of abusing its powers by taking control of the permitting program without proper notice. The agency, in response, criticized Texas officials for filing suit instead of working with it to protect public health.

The federal rules require new controls for reducing emissions from power plants, oil refineries and other large industrial facilities. Such rules would have a profound impact on Texas, which pumps more carbon dioxide into the air than any other state. The EPA has said that 167 facilities in Texas would be subject to the new permitting requirements. (Chron, 1/4/2010)

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