March 03, 2011

Lugar Cosponsors Legislation to Prevent Further EPA Regulation

Senator Dick Lugar today joined 42 other Republican Senators in introducing “The Energy Tax Prevention Act of 2011”.  The legislation prevents the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) from regulating greenhouse gases under the existing Clean Air Act. 

“Indiana continues to suffer from 9.5% unemployment, higher than the national average,” said Lugar. “The last thing we need at this critical stage of economic recovery is to have a bunch of big government federal regulators coming with rules that cost even more jobs. At a Senate Agriculture Committee hearing a year ago, I warned the EPA, but they have taken no heed of the Constitutional mandate for congressional oversight.”

“Climate policy, such as the emission regulations the Obama Administration is implementing, will affect every corner of our economy, from big utilities to family farmers, and every Hoosier rate payer,” Lugar added.  “Officials elected by and accountable to American voters, not bureaucrats, should be in charge of making any changes to our energy and environmental laws.”

“The Administration has used the hammer of EPA regulation to try to threaten Congress into cap and trade.  Political consensus and solutions do not arise from threats.  As a farmer and Methodist, I join with fellow Hoosiers in wanting to be good stewards of the land.  The threat of EPA regulation has only made the debate on environmental protection more polarized and made it more difficult to find lasting solutions.”

“Our nation faces an energy crisis, as our troops spread around the world and Hoosiers paying their gas bills know well.  I will continue to work for solutions that reduce our dependence on foreign oil, save money by saving energy, and help boost U.S. competitiveness.  In doing so, we also can make major gains in protecting our environment for future generations, including in helping to sequester and reduce greenhouse gas emissions.    

Senator Lugar has consistently opposed EPA regulation of greenhouse gases under the Clean Air Act.  He was an original co-sponsor of a resolution in the 111thCongress that would also have stopped the EPA from unilaterally creating restrictive greenhouse gas rules.

At an Agricultural Committee hearing in July 2009 Lugar said, “I believe I could get a majority of Senators to repeal whatever is in the EPA Act to eliminate the EPA out of this picture – the audacious idea that somehow or other we have to be pressed into this kind of [Waxman-Markey cap and trade] legislation because somebody at the EPA finds that things are askance.”  Waxman – Markey refers to the greenhouse gas cap and trade bill that was passed by the House of Representatives in the 111th Congress.


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