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EPA regulations mean higher energy prices, less energy reliability, lost jobs

March 09, 2012 J

TOPEKA, KAN. – In light of Monday’s scheduled visit from a U.S. Environmental Protection Agency official, the Kansas chapter of the grassroots group Americans for Prosperity reminds Kansans of the cumbersome regulations imposed by the EPA that are wreaking havoc on our state and nation’s economy.

EPA Administrator Lisa Jackson is scheduled to speak Monday afternoon in Lawrence. Her visit to Kansas comes on the heels of the EPA’s finalized Mercury and Air Toxics rule (commonly called the “Utility MACT”) being published in February. The rule requires coal- and oil-fired power plants to install expensive scrubbers or other equipment to reduce emissions of mercury, nine other metals, and three acid gases by 91 percent within three years. It has been identified as the most costly in U.S. history.

“The EPA under the Obama Administration has proposed numerous burdensome rules and regulations on our nation’s industries, including right here in Kansas,” said AFP-Kansas state director Derrick Sontag. “Projects like the expansion of the Sunflower Power Plant in Holcomb would provide much-needed jobs and energy for Kansans.”

Sontag noted the new rules and regulations could force numerous power plants into early retirement, threatening the reliability of our electricity and costing hundreds of thousands of jobs. According to estimates from the National Economic Research Associates (NERA), the plant closures from these new regulations will raise the cost of electricity by 12 percent nationwide and by as much as 24 percent in certain regions.

“Aside from increases in electricity bills, these regulations will certainly drive up the price of goods that use electricity to produce, and our gasoline prices are sure to soar even higher,” Sontag said.

In total, NERA estimates the Utility MACT rule could cost the country as many as 1.4 million jobs.

“The Obama Administration’s energy policy has amounted to the federal government picking winners and losers in the marketplace,” Sontag said. “As in the case of Solyndra, the government chose a green energy firm that went belly-up. Meanwhile the EPA continues to increase regulations on projects like the Holcomb plant expansion, simply leaving them – and the increased workers they might employ – out in the cold.”

Americans for Prosperity (AFP) is a nationwide organization of citizen-leaders committed to advancing every individual’s right to economic freedom and opportunity. AFP believes reducing the size and intrusiveness of government is the best way to promote individual productivity and prosperity for all Americans. AFP educates and engages citizens to support restraining state and federal government growth and returning government to its constitutional limits. AFP is more than 1.9 million activists strong, with activists in all 50 states. AFP has 34 state chapters and affiliates. More than 90,000 Americans in all 50 states have made a financial contribution to AFP or AFP Foundation. For more information, visit www.americansforprosperity.org
Americans for Prosperity does not support or oppose candidates for public office.

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