Obama’s EPA skipping a few steps on climate regs

posted at 3:40 pm on December 9, 2011 by Jazz Shaw

I won’t even dredge up the numerous times we’ve talked about the new, job killing, cross-state mercury emission rules currently being “considered” by the EPA with the full support of President Obama.(Though it is worth noting that just last week the North American Electric Reliability Corporation released a report stating that these new rules would stress the power grid in “ways never before experienced.”) But there’s still time for all voices to be heard and valid issues to be examined before the EPA releases their decision on December 16th, right? As the Washington Examiner discovered on the President’s own reelection web site, the entire thing may just be a dog and pony show for the public’s benefit.

The Environmental Protection Agency is supposed to be reviewing almost a million public comments on their proposed new mercury regulations for power plants. The final regulation isn’t set to be issued until next Friday. But according to President Obama’s reelection website, the EPA has already acted

So what does Barack Obama claim as part of his case for keeping the base happy?

Under President Obama’s watch, the Environmental Protection Agency has set up the first national standards for mercury emissions and other dangerous chemicals from coal and oil-fired power plants.

The new rules will help to clear our skies of pollutants that can make health problems like asthma and bronchitis worse, saving up to 17,000 lives each year.

Wait a minute… the EPA is supposedly in the process of reviewing more than a million comments from citizens, energy producers, workers and everyone else. There allegedly isn’t a decision yet. But somehow Barack Obama already knows the outcome? Was this question ever seriously being looked at, or was it a fait accompli before the first screams emerged about the lost jobs to come and the strain on the energy grid, particularly in Texas and adjoining states?

President Obama… are you even listening at all? Is there anyone at the EPA taking this seriously? Just in case this “mysteriously” disappears from Barack Obama’s web site over the weekend, here’s a screen capture of what it says today.

Obama Mercury Rules


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Look its an emergency, like Pearl Harbor or something like that, it’s national security, its “doing the peoples’ business, its really, really, really important, check the constitution, it says the president can do it, execute the laws or something.

Smedley on December 9, 2011 at 3:44 PM

Remember the good old days when we had the rule of law and presidents couldn’t just act arbitrarily? Good times, good times.

rbj on December 9, 2011 at 3:46 PM

What a difference having the media carry your water have. Apparently, it makes you believe you can do anything and not get called on it.

eva3071 on December 9, 2011 at 3:47 PM

We’re better off when he’s golfing..

The Oven on December 9, 2011 at 3:47 PM

What a guy! He cares about saving 17,000 of our worthless lives even if he has to do it over our dead bodies.

/lib off

Lily on December 9, 2011 at 3:47 PM

No surprise there Obama and his EPA staff don’t care what Americans think only that they want to put coal fired plants out of business. Loss of jobs and higher utility rates aren’t a big deal to them.

swamper on December 9, 2011 at 3:48 PM

Is anyone actually surprised by this? Did anyone really believe that the EPA was considering public comments before making a decision. Like many other government agencies, they are forced by law to go through the motions of a public comment phase before issuing regulations, but the decisions are always already known.

The solution is not to demand more attention to public comments, though. The solution is to take the regulatory authority away from these unaccountable bureaucrats and let our elected officials do the legislating.

Shump on December 9, 2011 at 3:49 PM

I can’t take this administration anymore. I swear they make my eyeballs bleed from frustration.

totherightofthem on December 9, 2011 at 3:49 PM

OT

Similarly, the president has steadfastly opposed moving ahead with the Keystone XL pipeline, a lock-solid job-creator that would also improve economic relations with the largest trading partner of the United States. Feigning a concern over unknown environmental implications — there is simply nothing to be learned over the next year — he has threatened to veto any legislative attempt to move ahead, even if it is paired with his proposed payroll tax cut.

He’s a one-man circular firing squad.

Fortunately, Speaker John Boehner has kept his eye on the jobs objective and will attempt to move through the Congress a bill that includes Keystone XL. Perhaps this will be he moment that finally reveals the president’s real motivation. Will he pursue the pro-growth objectives that presumably coincide with his need to have a stronger economy to get reelected? Or has he given up on the recovery and decided that the route to election is to divide America, pander to progressives, and relegate overall well-being to the back seat?

Schadenfreude on December 9, 2011 at 3:49 PM

Why are we still funding the EPA?

ctmom on December 9, 2011 at 3:50 PM

I read somewhere, probably here in the comments, that the EPA being an agency disqualifies it from being disbanded by EO. So how in the hell do we get rid of it? Does Congress have to vote it down?

cajun carrot on December 9, 2011 at 3:53 PM

Sounds like ideology circumventing common sense again.

desmo11 on December 9, 2011 at 3:53 PM

Was this question ever seriously being looked at, or was it a fait accompli before the first screams emerged about the lost jobs to come and the strain on the energy grid, particularly in Texas and adjoining states?

Two coal plants are already slated to close:

The largest power plant operator in Texas says it is closing two large coal-fired units in order to meet pending environmental rules and has filed suit against the Environmental Protection Agency in an effort to block the rules.

Dallas-based Luminant said today it will close Units 1 and 2 at the Monticello Power Plant in Northeast Texas, taking about 1,200 megawatts of capacity offline, in order to comply with the Cross-State Air Pollution rules that go into effect on Jan. 1.

So, either they are mind-readers and know the outcome (like Obama!) or this is more evidence they are not (and maybe never were) evaluating comments.

Buy Danish on December 9, 2011 at 3:53 PM

For the man who has everything.

Akzed on December 9, 2011 at 3:54 PM

Frontpage tagline:

Process? We don’t need no steeenking process.

PROGRESS trumps process.
/s

Marcola on December 9, 2011 at 3:54 PM

Why can’t he do it someone gonna stop him? Anyone? Repunks? Crickets!!!!!!!!!!!

ConcealedKerry on December 9, 2011 at 3:55 PM

Well he is scheduled to leave for Hawaii on the 16th so maybe he’s just cleaning up loose ends before he leaves, kinda like lighting all the candles on the Menorha, always on top of stuff

doublee on December 9, 2011 at 3:56 PM

Summer-time rolling black-outs cause deaths in unventilated apartment and in hospitals. Mostly poor people, I would imagine.
Who are going to serve, the people who vote for you or the people who fund you?
Oh, nevermind…

tomg51 on December 9, 2011 at 3:57 PM

And the long train of abuses grows ever longer.

Joe Mama on December 9, 2011 at 3:58 PM

Just wait till the government figures out their new light bulbs they are forcing everyone to use has mercury. The US will look like North Korea at night. :/

Betenoire on December 9, 2011 at 3:58 PM

insert “you” as needed

tomg51 on December 9, 2011 at 3:58 PM

Getting Obama to shut the hell up would do more to clear the air than any EPA regulation.

E L Frederick (Sniper One) on December 9, 2011 at 3:58 PM

Congress? What’s that?

ICanSeeNovFromMyHouse on December 9, 2011 at 3:58 PM

More:

The moves will lead to about 500 job cuts, the company said.

“While Luminant is making preparations to meet the rule’s compliance deadline, this morning it also filed a legal challenge in an effort to protect facilities and employees, and to minimize the harm this rule will cause to electric reliability in Texas,” the company said in a statement.

The company is asking an appeals court for a stay implementing the Cross-State rule, saying it is illegal because the EPA didn’t include Texas in the draft rules released in 2010. The final rules released in June 2011 included a heavy emissions reduction burden for Texas.

Texas officials quickly seized on the company’s actions as evidence of the need for regulatory reform in a slumping economy. Just a week before, ERCOT, the state’s main power grid operator, warned that the rules could threaten electric reliability with the forced retirement of older coal-fired units.

“As expected, the only results of this rule will be putting Texans out of work and creating hardships for them and their families, while putting the reliability of Texas’ grid in jeopardy,” Gov. Rick Perry said in a statement.

The Texas Commission on Environmental Quality, which is charged with overseeing the state’s air quality, said the Luminant announcement is “a sad confirmation of the TCEQ’s previous statements” against the regulations.

“These rules, imposed on Texas without adequate notice and without adequate scientific justification, will kill jobs, put the brakes on economic growth, increase energy costs and impair our energy security—all with little or no positive environmental effects,” the TCEQ said in a statement.

Environmental groups hailed Luminant’s decision, however.

“The announcement by Luminant today is a victory for all Texans who care about clean air,” said Eva Hernandez with Sierra Club’s Beyond Coal campaign in Texas. ”Coal-fired electricity is the primary source of toxic mercury pollution and is a leading trigger of asthma attacks. Children, the elderly, and anyone with respiratory illness are especially vulnerable to air pollution emitted from coal-fired power plants.”

More at the link.

Clearly Eve Hernandez will not be happy until every coal fired plant in the country is shut down.

Buy Danish on December 9, 2011 at 4:00 PM

If we’re concerned about mercury, shouldn’t we ban CFL’s?

EricW on December 9, 2011 at 4:00 PM

Are those new mercury regs going to cover the stuff in those toxic CFLs that lefties are so fond of?

Stu Gotts on December 9, 2011 at 4:00 PM

Buy Danish on December 9, 2011 at 3:53 PM

You know what’s insane about Lignite? How much of it there is, and how easy it is to get. Why is it relevant? Because that is what Luminite burns. Lignite supposedly is “dirty coal” so it cannot meet these new regs. What it is really is “young coal” that is in early stages of becoming what we peons consider coal.

What’s nuts is that it is a major source of the USA, Germany, and Greece’s electrical generation. And we are exhausting it’s use prematurely.

cajun carrot on December 9, 2011 at 4:01 PM

Wouldn’t this be something ripe for State Attornies General to file suit over if our States were actually still sovereign?

Clearly there are no checks and balances left within the Federal national government. It’s time the States start doing the checking and balancing.

JerseyJK on December 9, 2011 at 4:02 PM

2 questions

1. You all must be aware Chicagoland gets 75% of its electricity from a ring of nuclear plants right? So what does he care

2. Does this mean I can sue the next shipment of CFL’s?

WryTrvllr on December 9, 2011 at 4:04 PM

IfI get permission to heat my house from algore, do I get a pass from these rules?

strawmanczar on December 9, 2011 at 4:07 PM

Clearly Eve Hernandez will not be happy until every coal fired plant in the country is shut down.

Buy Danish on December 9, 2011 at 4:00 PM

So who wants to be the one to tell her and the rest of the Friends of the Environment geniuses that juice for their Save the Planet electric cars doesn’t magically appear in the wall socket?

I call “Not It!”

Lily on December 9, 2011 at 4:10 PM

If you already have asthma them the current administration has a sure fire program to help!

The FDA issued a reminder to physicians and patients that the only over-the-counter inhaler for asthma symptom relief will be gone from the market on Dec. 31, as part of an international ban on its chlorofluorocarbon (CFC) propellant.

That is the last date that Primatene Mist, delivering aerolized epinephrine, can legally be sold in the U.S., according to an FDA rule issued in 2008.

Primatene Mist is also the only approved inhaler for asthma symptoms with epinephrine as the active ingredient.

edsjim on December 9, 2011 at 4:14 PM

The 1st computer model indicated this will only save 1 life.

So it was reprogrammed until they got the desired result.

shanimal on December 9, 2011 at 4:15 PM

Clearly Eve Hernandez will not be happy until every coal fired plant in the country is shut down.

Buy Danish on December 9, 2011 at 4:00 PM

That’s always been the stated goal. Coal plants serve the less populated portions of the country. Rolling blackouts in the hinterlands beginning in the middle of the NEXT administration. Remember Gray Davis??

WryTrvllr on December 9, 2011 at 4:19 PM

Well, when the President does it, that means that it is not illegal.—Richard Nixon

wjjhoge on December 9, 2011 at 4:19 PM

The “Holiday” lights here in the Peoples Republic of Cambridge have small solar panels powering them.

Saving the earth one holiday light at a time…

shanimal on December 9, 2011 at 4:20 PM

These pinheads would drop dead of a heart attack if they ever visited my town in the winter. Most of us heat with wood, and you can literally SEE the carbon footprint, LOL.

However, it costs us about $50 (not including mine and my husband’s labor, which I don’t, as it isn’t an out of pocket expense) to heat our home for the entire winter. Sorry, but I’m not changing to something cleaner. Obummer and the EPA can stick it in their collective ear.

sage0925 on December 9, 2011 at 4:25 PM

The “Holiday” lights here in the Peoples Republic of Cambridge have small solar panels powering them.

Saving the earth one holiday light at a time…

shanimal on December 9, 2011 at 4:20 PM

Good idea!!! Solar Panels are dirt cheap right now, what with the spaniards dumping them and all…..

WryTrvllr on December 9, 2011 at 4:29 PM

Welcome to what we here in CA been experiencing for decades. It’s a fantastic model for the rest of the country. Just don’t look at how it ends…..I can guarantee you won’t like it.

antipc on December 9, 2011 at 4:29 PM

This should be an ad for the winning republican candidate along with the facts on Mercury and CO2. Burning coal is a very small part of the mercury entering the atmosphere and as far as the global warming if it occurring and CO2 being a main contributer well…. far from proven.

StuckinliberalNY on December 9, 2011 at 4:29 PM

sage0925 on December 9, 2011 at 4:25 PM

Stick with all the dead elms and your footprint is zero, and the particulates help cool the earth!!!!

WryTrvllr on December 9, 2011 at 4:31 PM

sage0925 on December 9, 2011 at 4:25 PM

Stick with all the dead elms and your footprint is zero, and the particulates help cool the earth!!!!

WryTrvllr on December 9, 2011 at 4:31 PM

Sorry, but mostly what we have up here is pine, pine, and more pine. We do have Black Locust (highest BTU’s for wood burning), but that’s really hard to come by, and we have aspen, which is REALLY low in the BTU department. I haven’t seen an elm since we left Georgia.

sage0925 on December 9, 2011 at 4:36 PM

CO2 being a main contributer well…. far from proven.

StuckinliberalNY on December 9, 2011 at 4:29 PM

Next up…

Mann at Penn State goes into archeology just so he can find Erik the Red…….to urinate on his grave

WryTrvllr on December 9, 2011 at 4:39 PM

Are those 17,000 annual lives saved or created?

LetsBfrank on December 9, 2011 at 4:42 PM

And exactly how much is it going to cost to “save” this 0.0056% of the US population?

rogerb on December 9, 2011 at 4:50 PM

Both the air and water are cleaner today than when I was a kid. And both are continuing to improve with the current standards in place. Some how the most educated people in government have failed to see this. Just goes to show, you cannot fix stupid even with an ivy league education.

nazadad on December 9, 2011 at 4:50 PM

Has any administration in our generation been as lawless as this one? Serious question.

The Rogue Tomato on December 9, 2011 at 4:51 PM

Just imagine what Stalin could have accomplished had he an EPA.

bloviator on December 9, 2011 at 4:55 PM

Has any administration in our generation been as lawless as this one? Serious question.

The Rogue Tomato on December 9, 2011 at 4:51 PM

It’s not lawless when you own the DOJ. Serious answer

WryTrvllr on December 9, 2011 at 5:02 PM

Last winter during the cold week that froze the country, electricity demand from Texas was blamed for the gas shortage in NM. Apparently the pumping stations run on electricity, and they failed in Texas due to increased demand from Texans. NM gas lines went dead.
A similiar situation could actually casue deaths in some parts of the country.

Plantnerd on December 9, 2011 at 5:06 PM

Do they not at all find it ironic that the curly fry light bulbs they’re so fond of will create an enormous mercury problem when millions of people start simply throwing them in the trash can, instead of disposing of them in the EPA recommended way, resulting in mercury-filled landfills and contaminated ground water? So, rather than breathe mercury, we’ll just ingest it. Environmentalist logic is brilliant. /s

College Prof on December 9, 2011 at 5:13 PM

Tell my how those toxic curley fries save any enegy at all when it’s 3 degrees outside?? What does logic have to do with it.

“If it makes you happy,….can’t be that baaaaad…”

WryTrvllr on December 9, 2011 at 5:20 PM

17,000 lives saved right? Why not a Gazillion lives saved. Sure… while we’re at it a Gazillion jobs were “saved or created” by doubling our electricity bills too.

What % of Al Gore’s income is a doubled electrical bill?

What % of your income is a doubled electrical bill?

DANEgerus on December 9, 2011 at 5:24 PM

I’m sure that the EPA will examine all the facts with the same DUE DILIGENCE that the Highway Safety people did with the Chev volt fires.

Wouldn’t want to jump to any quick conclusions, now would we?

GarandFan on December 9, 2011 at 5:36 PM

I read somewhere, probably here in the comments, that the EPA being an agency disqualifies it from being disbanded by EO. So how in the hell do we get rid of it? Does Congress have to vote it down?

cajun carrot on December 9, 2011 at 3:53 PM

It can be de-funded.

NapaConservative on December 9, 2011 at 5:42 PM

From the same Obama web page:

The President made an agreement with auto manufacturers that will improve the overall fuel economy of the nation’s auto fleet to 54.5 miles per gallon by 2025—nearly twice the 27.5 miles per gallon standard that was in place when he took office.

The new standards are projected to save families an estimated $8,200 in fuel costs over the life of a vehicle. Take a look at our infographic to see how these changes will help your wallet.

WTF is an infographic? And are we really going to let them force us to buy cars that won’t get out of their own way?

mike_NC9 on December 9, 2011 at 5:45 PM

The EPA and the UN, intent to do harm.

Speakup on December 9, 2011 at 5:47 PM

Give up…It’s obama’s world and the rest of us are stuck in the back seat of a runaway car.

DWoDiego on December 9, 2011 at 6:00 PM

Barry is confused.

“Do I ram through my Destroy America agenda in the year that I
have left in this term, or slow down and concentrate on
stealing the next election? “

amadan on December 9, 2011 at 6:01 PM

Process? We don’t need no steeenking process.

We don’t read no steeenking comments neither!

Obama: Merry Christmas, everyone, but you can’t light the tree!

Steve Z on December 9, 2011 at 6:17 PM

edsjim on December 9, 2011 at 4:14 PM

I’d forgotten about that inhaler fiasco.

The new standards are projected to save families an estimated $8,200 in fuel costs over the life of a vehicle. Take a look at our infographic to see how these changes will help your wallet.
WTF is an infographic? And are we really going to let them force us to buy cars that won’t get out of their own way?
mike_NC9 on December 9, 2011 at 5:45 PM

So, they save 17,000 lives by making the air cleaner (a stat I don’t believe), but how many people will die because of the regs on Asthma inhalers and the unsafe/too light vehicles people will be forced to drive in to meet the standards of Central Planning in D.C.?

Buy Danish on December 9, 2011 at 6:20 PM

Michael Savage was on the radio the other night claiming that British crematoria were working to prevent mercury from dental fillings in cremated cadavers from getting into the air. Gee, when those people were alive, wouldn’t they be poisoned by mercury in their mouths?

Sometimes this gets ridiculous…

Steve Z on December 9, 2011 at 6:21 PM

Great and winter is just getting started. The first candidate who will sign a pledge to eliminate the epa has my vote.

Kissmygrits on December 9, 2011 at 6:29 PM

Michael Savage was on the radio the other night claiming that British crematoria were working to prevent mercury from dental fillings in cremated cadavers from getting into the air. Gee, when those people were alive, wouldn’t they be poisoned by mercury in their mouths?

Sometimes this gets ridiculous…

Steve Z on December 9, 2011 at 6:21 PM

Did he mention that they want to generate electricity from them too? At least it’ll make landing on the Charring T Cross (sp?) Tower less bumpy

WryTrvllr on December 9, 2011 at 6:30 PM

He is determined to impoverish us and make us slaves to the state. Why the heck is gasoline still $3.50 a gallon? Why is he going to cause energy prices to ‘necessarily skyrocket’?

The pattern is clear.

CorporatePiggy on December 9, 2011 at 6:31 PM

Is the EPA constitutional? If not, ignore them.

prodigalson on December 9, 2011 at 6:41 PM

So what’s the current level of mercury contamination in the Great Lakes? Anyone know? Up, down, steady? It’s a quantifiable variable since the seventies at least, a forty year history.

How are those permits for drilling in the Gulf of Mexico coming along? Cuba has contracted a drilling rig for offshore Florida waters. What are we doing? Watching Cuba drill for oil.

Skandia Recluse on December 9, 2011 at 6:56 PM

Don’t fxxx with my juice, dude.

This ain’t California, and you don’t want to be Gray Davis.

hillbillyjim on December 9, 2011 at 7:04 PM

Can’t wait for November ’12, to get rid of this problem. However, don’t have a lot of faith that anyone in Washington is willing to do anything about it. It’s time for a complete changing of the guard!

Halfinch on December 9, 2011 at 7:17 PM

Barack Obama: America’s first dick-tator.

realitycheck on December 9, 2011 at 8:00 PM

So what’s the current level of mercury contamination in the Great Lakes? Anyone know?
Skandia Recluse on December 9, 2011 at 6:56 PM

Yes. I know exactly what the contamination level is: probably somewhere between one part per thousand and one part per trillion.

But that doesn’t matter. All that matters is that whatever the standards are now, they always have to be more strict. Because cleaner is better, right?

Or are you one of Those People Who Say that you WANT more poison in America’s drinking water?

logis on December 9, 2011 at 9:44 PM

These guys make my hair hurt.

OneArmPaperHanger on December 9, 2011 at 9:56 PM

If they are truly not following the proper procedure, it will be easier to invalidate the rules, if a Republican gets into office. If one is truly interested in encouraging jobs, the first thing the new President should do is order a review of everything they have done.

oldmam on December 9, 2011 at 11:39 PM

Nobel-Winning IPCC Chair Rajendra Pachauri Urges Obama to “Listen to Science” on Global Warming

Pachauri continued, “Actually, to be honest, nobody over here [at COP 17] is paying any attention to science.”

J_Crater on December 10, 2011 at 12:21 AM

“…energy prices will necessarily skyrocket…” Ring a bell?

LizardLips on December 10, 2011 at 2:15 AM

Tom Clancy had it right on their ideas and ultimate goals in “Rainbow Six” …they really want to kill as many people as possible to ‘save’ the planet

liveammo on December 10, 2011 at 4:18 AM

it says the president can do it, execute the laws or something.
Smedley on December 9, 2011 at 3:44 PM

True! However that same constitution says the prez cannot wright laws!

“Look its an emergency, like Pearl Harbor or something like that, it’s national security, its “doing the peoples’ business, its really, really, really important,

This is not an “emergency, like Pearl Harbor or something like that, it’s national security” nor is it “doing the peoples’ business

“The new rules will help to clear our skies of pollutants that can make health problems like asthma and bronchitis worse, saving up to 17,000 lives each year.”

Yet the CFL bulbs, that are required by Obama are pact with mercury!
What ever steps are taken to reduce mercury from coal and oil-fired power plants are more than offset by the mercury/ CFL bulbs!

DSchoen on December 10, 2011 at 4:52 AM

If the goal was reducing mercury he wouldn’t have mandated light bulbs that are filled with mercury! Who is too stupid to figure this out?

DSchoen on December 10, 2011 at 5:16 AM

this gov’t not only doesn’t follow the rules, they make them up as they go along. and the “cancel the election” meter now stands at 20%.

tm11999 on December 10, 2011 at 7:21 AM