The high court’s ruling undermined Obama administration regulations targeting mercury and other hazardous air pollutants — a different set of regulations from the greenhouse gas limits that Obama is counting on to slow the effects of global warming.
Many companies have already spent the money to retrofit or shut down the coal-fired power plants that were most affected. Other Texas power companies rely more on natural gas or nuclear power and actually supported the Environmental Protection Agency rule that went into effect in April.
The rules began to take effect in April, but the court said by a 5-4 vote Monday that the Environmental Protection Agency failed to take their cost into account when the agency first decided to regulate the toxic emissions from coal- and oil-fired plants.
The meeting comes six months before world leaders gather at a United Nations-sponsored conference in Paris in December to finalize a climate treaty. Obama has argued that a gradually warming planet could worsen social tensions and political instability worldwide, in addition to harming the U.S.
The AEE report claimed that the existing and planned natural gas infrastructure can handle the increased demand created by the so-called, federal Clean Power Plan, which would lead to the further reduced reliance on coal power.
Lawmakers voted 247-180 to support a bill allowing states to opt out of the Obama administration’s plan to limit carbon pollution from coal-fired power plants if the state’s governor determines it would cause significant rate hikes for electricity or harm reliability of service.
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