Bad Policy That Won't Stand in Court
The EPA is essentially “energy profiling” by picking favorites to drive U.S. energy policy, and there are questions concerning whether EPA’s proposed rule, if enacted, will stand in court.
This policy play has been tried and failed many times. In Australia, a carbon tax drove up energy costs to double that of other nations. Outrage over soaring electricity costs, lost jobs and a soft economy resulted in the worst Labor defeat in eight decades, with recent installation of the new liberal party government.
Australia's Carbon Tax Creates Highest Electricity Prices in Developed World
The Australian carbon tax sent electricity cost soaring to averages costs that were more than 175% higher than the average cost per kilowatt hour in the United States.
In Europe, a longstanding emissions trading system has raised electricity prices, increased national debt and driven out businesses and jobs. Electricity prices rose 55 percent higher than those in the United States when indexed against 2005 prices, according to the European Commission. And the region suffers a 26 percent unemployment rate. Sadly, about 1.4 million European households are expected to be pushed into energy poverty as soon as 2020.
Europe's Carbon Emissions Trading System Sent Prices Soaring
The average electricity prices in the European Union are more than double than those in the United States.
In California, where coal is essentially left out of the energy equation, electricity prices are among the highest in the nation. Nearly 12 million Californians are eligible for low-income energy assistance.
These are lessons, not models for U.S. energy policy.
California's Energy Policies Significantly Drive Up Power Costs
California's electricity rates are 40% higher than the U.S. average. The high cost of power has resulted in the loss off 600,000 manufacturing jobs since 2000.
Beyond the issues with poor policy, there is an important legal question about the agency's actions: The EPA seeks a rule that will mandate carbon capture and storage technology for all new coal plants. While this technology is promising for the future, it is not commercially available, and certainly not able to satisfy the nation's need for low-cost power.
Many believe the agency is acting outside its authority under the Clean Air Act by attempting to rewrite energy policy and force a standard that is impossible to achieve. Congress never intended the Clean Air Act to be used this way.
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