Statement by ERCC Director Scott Segal EPA Action on Greenhouse Gas Emissions and New Source Performance Standards (NSPS)

December 23, 2010

Today, the EPA commits the country to an unrealistic timetable for the regulation of global greenhouse gases from refineries and power plants. By singling out the energy sector, the Agency puts the nation's fragile economic recovery at risk and stifles job creation. Small businesses, schools, hospitals, and energy-intensive manufacturers are particularly at risk from high energy prices.

At the same time, because EPA intends to act alone without coordination with foreign nations that account for the greatest proportion of carbon emissions, there will be little if any environmental gain associated with today's action. Further, despite protests from supporters of emissions and permitting rules, state and local agencies are simply unprepared to implement and enforce a carbon regulatory regime.

Perhaps most disturbing about today's action is the suspect administrative process used to commit our nation to the timetable for refiners and power producers. The Agency reached it's conclusions in the guise of a settlement agreement without the input of the regulated community. Doing so undermines the credibility of EPA's assessment of what can actually be expected of current technology. Unlike regulation of traditional air pollutants, addressing carbon does not rely on off-the-shelf technology, so facile claims about past performance are simply inappropriate.