Senator Offers Amendment to Block EPA from Regulating CO2

By Steve Everley on September 24, 2009

Senator Lisa Murkowski (R-AK) is offering an amendment today that would block the EPA from regulating carbon dioxide under the Clean Air Act. President Obama’s climate “czar” Carol Browner actually opposes this amendment, even though she has stated that EPA regulation of CO2 is “not something that anybody wants.”

As the folks at Hot Air point out, this could generate more support than people expect. Given the intensity of debate surrounding cap and trade and the bipartisan opposition to the energy tax, removing EPA’s authority to regulate CO2 could allow more time for our leaders in Congress to hash out a rational energy policy rather than trying to tweak a 1,400 page monstrosity of a bill that passed the House in June.

If no bill is signed dealing with greenhouse gas emissions, the EPA will have the authority to regulate CO2 sometime in the next year. This fall the agency is expected to issue its ruling that greenhouse gases are a danger to human health, paving the way for it to regulate GHGs (including CO2) from stationary sources like power plants and factories.

According to Murkowski’s press office, the amendment would “simply remove the gun from the Senate’s head” while it considers energy legislation.

Call your senators at (202) 224-3121 and tell them to vote in favor of this common-sense approach to energy policy.

UPDATE: The Senate has shockingly refused to allow the amendment to be considered. Senators Barbara Boxer (D-CA) and Dianne Feinstein (D-CA) led the effort to prevent it from being considered. On the floor of the Senate, Boxer eschewed any restraint from hyperbole and called the amendment “an attack on our families and an attack on our children.”

Senator Sheldon Whitehouse (D-RI) was perhaps more candid than he expected when he claimed the amendment “would have hurt our legislative efforts” to pass the energy tax.

Senators John Thune (R-SD) and Murkowski plan to continue to resubmit the amendment as frequently as they can. Make sure to call your senators and encourage them to vote in favor of this measure whenever it reaches the Senate floor, and tell them you support a rational debate rather than a parliamentary procedure that avoids even considering the measure.

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