Monday, May 23, 2011

Polluters rev up new attacks on clean-air protections

An excerpt from Environment and Energy Daily

Panel to vote on bills targeting EPA drilling, power plant rules

In a bid to knock down barriers to offshore drilling and protect coal-fired power plants from costly new requirements, a House Energy and Commerce subcommittee will vote tomorrow on two bills aimed at U.S. EPA air pollution rules.

The panel's Energy and Power Subcommittee will mark up a bill from Rep. Cory Gardner (R-Colo.) that would tweak the Clean Air Act to ease the permitting process for offshore drilling. Those air permits would be spared from review by the Environmental Appeals Board and would not need to consider whether a project would cause air quality problems at sea.

The measure comes as a response to the five-year struggle by Royal Dutch Shell PLC to start drilling in federal waters off the northern coast of Alaska...

Also set to be marked up tomorrow is a bill that would form a commission of Cabinet-level officials to study the cumulative economic impact of EPA rules on the power sector. The measure from Reps. John Sullivan (R-Okla.) and Jim Matheson (D-Utah) focuses on several new and proposed rules that would require coal-fired power plants to spend money on new technology to prevent air pollution and water contamination...

Schedule: The markup is tomorrow, May 24, at 10 a.m. in 2123 Rayburn.

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