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McConnell Unveils Bill Countering New EPA Emissions Standards


Senator Mitch McConnell is making good on his promise to introduce legislation that would block new rules announced this week by the Environmental Protection Agency.

The E.P.A. rules call on power plants to reduce carbon emissions 30 percent by 2030. The move has been slammed by Republicans and some coal-state Democrats who describe the standards as federal overreach that will harm the nation’s economy while doing little to actually halt climate change.

The E.P.A says the regulations will help clean the air and establish the U.S. as a leader in the fight against climate change.

Sen. McConnell has introduced what he’s calling the Coal Country Protection Act. According to McConnell’s office, the legislation would mandate the Secretary of Labor to certify to the EPA Administrator that the new regulations will not lead to a loss of jobs.

Also under the measure, the Director of the Congressional Budget Office would have to certify that the regulations would not result in a loss of gross domestic product in the U.S.

Other parts of the bill would require certification that the new rules wouldn’t increase electricity rates or impact the delivery of electricity to consumers.

The issue of greater federal regulation of power plant emissions has unified Kentucky’s U.S. Senate opponents. Both Sen. McConnell and his Democratic challenger, Secretary of State Alison Lundergan Grimes, have denounced the Obama administration this week following the announcement of the new emissions standards.

Kevin is the News Director at WKU Public Radio. He has been with the station since 1999, and was previously the Assistant News Director, and also served as local host of Morning Edition.
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