Tuesday, June 3, 2014

Do you like the new EPA regs that will raise your electric bill and cost jobs? If so, thank your councilman.

Do you approve of the new EPA regulations, that were not authorized by Congress, that applies to existing power plants, that will drive up electric bills, cost the economy about 200,000 jobs and do virtually nothing to curtail global warming? If you do, then give a big shout-out to your locally elected Council member.

On November 12, 2012, the Metro Council unanimously passed RESOLUTION NO. RS2012-478, which put the Council on record:

  • "as supporting the reduction of greenhouse gas pollution under the Environmental Protection Agency Clean Air Act," 
  • " as noting that climate change is not an abstract problem for the future or one that will only affect far-distant places, but rather climate change is happening now, we are contributing to it, and the longer we wait to act, the more we lose and the more difficult the problem will be to solve." and, 
  • urging "the administrator of the Environmental Protection Agency, Lisa P. Jackson, and President Barack Obama to move swiftly to fully employ and enforce the Clean Air Act to do our part to reduce carbon in our atmosphere to no more than 350 parts per million." 

This was not a contentious piece of legislation that barely passed the council. Every member present voted for it. Robert Duvall voted for it. Duane Dominy voted for it. Carter Todd voted for it. Davette Blalock not only voted for it, she co-sponsored it. Charlie Tygard voted for it. Phil Clairborne voted for it. Karen Bennett voted for it. Tony Tennpenny voted for it.

In their wisdom the Council declared that no more than 350 parts per million was the right amount of carbon the atmosphere could tolerate. Not 325 parts per million or 375 parts per million, but 350. We have some really smart councilman to figure that out. Also, the Council didn't ask for a cost benefit analysis to determine the incremental cost of hitting that magic number. The cost be damned; just do it. This bill was part of a nation wide effort to get local governments across the nation to push the Obama administration to impose the regulation that were just recently propagated. Locally it was promoted by Vanderbilt University environmental activist.

I hope that in the future we will elect some Republicans to the Council who are at least as conservative as Lamar Alexander and Bob Corker. It would be nice if we had some conservatives on the Council.

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