WASHINGTON, DC – Senator Dan Coats (R-Ind.) today commented on the Obama Administration’s finalized rules to limit carbon dioxide emissions from new power plants and require existing plants to cut carbon dioxide output 32 percent by 2030:
“President Obama’s actions circumvent Congress and will completely restructure Indiana’s electricity sector by executive fiat. These finalized rules will substantially raise electricity rates for Hoosier families, jeopardize grid reliability and cost jobs, all while yielding potentially negligible global carbon dioxide reductions. These rules will force irrevocable and costly compliance actions by Indiana’s energy companies before the courts can determine the legality of the rules.
“In addition to legal questions, the EPA’s announcement ignores the progress the utility industry has made in recent years. Energy providers in Indiana and across the country have spent tens of billions in capital investment for air pollution controls resulting in significant declines in emissions. These rules impose additional cumbersome regulations that fail to fully appreciate the industries current progress as much as they ignore the costs that will be impose.
“By trumpeting these regulations, the president is putting his legacy before the well-being of Hoosiers and Indiana’s economy. Congress should act swiftly to overturn these rules and focus on pursuing pragmatic solutions to steward energy resources and grow the economy.”
Indiana is the eighth-highest coal producing state in the nation and relies on coal-fired electricity to meet over 80 percent of Hoosier energy needs. The coal industry provides over 2,500 jobs and contributes more than $750 million to the Indiana economy.
Earlier this summer, Coats supported Governor Pence’s actions in calling for the EPA to withdraw or substantially change these rules.
Coats is a cosponsor of the bipartisan ARENA Act, which would allow states to protect their citizens from the excessive negative impacts of the “Clean Power Plan” regulation.
This past December, Coats joined with 22 other senators in a letter to EPA Administrator Gina McCarthy to express deep concern about the impact that the proposed clean power plan would have on electricity prices and power grid reliability. Last fall, McCarthy embarked on a national listening tour to gather feedback on possible new energy regulations. Notably absent from her itinerary was Indiana or any other Midwest state that generates a high percentage of electricity from coal.