Oh great, yet another new EPA regulation making things more expensive for everyone
posted at 1:01 pm on July 14, 2012 by Erika Johnsen
Just in case you needed yet another example of Obama’s Environmental Protection Agency going above and beyond the call of duty in putting their own nebulous agenda before the concerns of the American people, here ya’ go.
The EPA, working through the auspices of the U.S. Coast Guard, is set to begin enforcing a new rule on August 1st that will require all large marine vessels (like cargo and cruise ships) sailing in southern Alaska waters to use low-sulfur fuel. The EPA is justifying the regulation as an extension of an amendment to a treaty, the International Convention for the Prevention of Pollution from Ships (MARPOL), that Hillary Clinton accepted in 2010. The problem is that our Senate has yet to ratify that particular amendment — but when have such minute legal particulars ever bothered the EPA?
Fortunately, Alaska is fighting back — on Friday, the state filed a lawsuit against the Obama administration to try and block the costly new regulation.
The lawsuit faults the EPA, the Department of Homeland Security and others for using a marine treaty amendment as the basis for the new federal regulations without waiting for ratification of that amendment by the U.S. Senate.
The Alaska Department of Law said in a statement that the low-sulfur-fuel requirement would be costly, jacking up prices for products shipped by marine vessel and harming Alaska’s cruise industry. …
“There are reasonable and equally effective alternatives for the Secretary and the EPA to consider which would still protect the environment but dramatically reduce the severe impact these regulations will have on Alaskan jobs and families.”
Totem Ocean Trailer Express, a major shipper operating in Alaska, estimates that the move to low-sulfur fuel will increase its costs by 8 percent, Geraghty said.
Really, Obama administration? You’re already denying a boatload of jobs, wealth, revenue, and economic growth to Alaskans by disallowing them access to a bunch of their own oil and gas, and now you’re butting in with an ill-thought-out, overzealous regulation that will negatively impact the thousands of jobs in the shipping and cruise industries? The Alaskan economy just can’t seem to catch a break from these people!
When you impose costs on businesses, you’re also imposing costs on the consumers of that product and the employees who produce it — prices go up, people stand to lose their jobs, and the economy suffers. It sounds like there are other alternatives the EPA might consider (and you’d think they would, given their penchant for long, drawn-out environmental impact reviews!), and again, the United States hasn’t even agreed to the shipping treaty’s new amendment yet. This is just another example of an out-of-control independent regulatory agency grabbing more power for itself and using fiat to enforce their green worldview, the costs be damned. Bad form, EPA.