Governor Greg Abbott, Lieutenant Governor Dan Patrick and Attorney General Ken Paxton today sent a letter to the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), praising its plan to repeal the Clean Power Plan and review the closely related New Source Performance Standard (NSPS), both of which are unlawful and institute job-killing regulations.
The Clean Power Plan failed to produce evidence of greenhouse gases dangerous enough to necessitate federal regulation. Instead, the EPA claimed authority to regulate any emissions coming from a source listed with the NSPS, and did not limit its regulation to pollutants that are proven to be harmful. This broad, self-granted authority resulted in permission for the EPA to regulate harmless emissions, and a non-requirement to regulate significant and dangerous emissions.
“We appreciate the Trump administration’s recognition that the NSPS’s nonsensical contributions to the unlawful Clean Power Plan warrant review,” Attorney General Paxton said. “We’re proud to have led a strong coalition opposing this baseless overreach, and we look forward to working with the EPA to find logical, lawful ways to protect both our environment and economy.”
Previously, Texas and West Virginia led a 24 state-coalition in challenging the Clean Power Plan all of the way to the U.S. Supreme Court, where they won a stay while the D.C. Circuit Court of Appeals decided the case. On March 28, President Trump signed an executive order directing the EPA to unwind the plan, and one month later, the D.C. Circuit Court placed the case on hold while the EPA reviewed the energy regulation.
The Clean Power Plan, which is heavily reliant on information from the NSPS, would have subjected Americans to higher electricity costs and could have weakened the nation’s power grid. The Heritage Foundation estimates that the plan would have resulted in an average annual loss of nearly 400,000 jobs, increases of 13-20 percent in household electricity expenses, a total income loss of more than $20,000 for a typical family of four, and an aggregate loss of over $2.5 trillion in gross domestic product by 2035.