Environmental Protection Agency
When President Obama took office, most environmental activists assumed that their cause would still meet resistance in Washington DC—they just assumed it would be located in Congress. But according to activists, a chief opponent of environmental causes has turned out to be within the White House itself: The Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs (OIRA). A division of the Office of Management and Budget (OMB), OIRA has always had the power to review the economic impact of virtually any new federal regulation.
Could the New EPA Regulations Spur Economic Growth?
December 22, 2011
Yesterday the Environmental Protection Agency unveiled a set of long-anticipated regulations on the amount of mercury, arsenic (who knew?) and other acid gasses that coal and oil companies will be permitted to emit. Several big power plants, along with their Republican boosters, are up in arms about the ‘job-killing’ standards, though they have four years to figure out how to comply with them. The EPA concedes that power plants responsible for about 0.5 percent of the nation’s energy will likely be shuttered.
Romney’s Energy Advisors All Used To Work For Bush. Is That Good Or Bad?
November 19, 2011
[guest post from Molly Redden] On Monday, Politico published a brief write-up of Mitt Romney’s informal team of energy advisers. All four that were named happen to be former George W. Bush officials, and there are a number of ways their pasts could dog Romney. Bush’s record may have frustrated environmentalists, but these officials have made statements supporting a cap-and-trade system for certain pollutants, or oversaw federal initiatives to subsidize clean energy technology—ideas that approach treason among today’s GOPers.
No More Mr. Nice Guy
November 11, 2011
As I have said before, I'm not going to be engaging in too much media criticism on this blog, because once I get going on that score, there's no stopping me. But I'll make an exception today for an instance I found especially egregious.
November 09, 2011
The GOP’s favorite punching bag right now is a government regulation that doesn’t exist. “Our goals include ... overturning the EPA’s proposed regulations that inhibit jobs in areas [such as] farm dust,” House Majority Leader Eric Cantor wrote in an August Washington Post op-ed. There was no such proposed rule. “We’ll stop excessive federal regulations that inhibit jobs in areas [such as] farm dust,” House Speaker John Boehner similarly pledged in a September 15 speech to the Economic Club of D.C. Still, there was no such proposal.
"Oops" -- and Why Romney Should Thank Perry
November 09, 2011
The headlines from Wednesday night’s Republican presidential debate will be about Rick Perry and his “oops” moment. In case you missed it, Perry was describing his economic agenda when he mentioned that he wanted to eliminate three federal agencies – and couldn’t remember the third. He got Commerce and Education, but flailed about for a painful few seconds, trying to think of the other. Ron Paul jumped in, suggesting maybe it should be five agencies. Another candidate said maybe Perry was thinking of the EPA.
Rick Perry's Record on the Environment: Is it Bad, or Awful?
September 06, 2011
In April 2009 the Environmental Protection Agency announced that it had found that carbon dioxide and several other greenhouse gases, though not pollutants in themselves, were subject to federal regulation under the Clean Air Act, because of the threats they pose to human health via climate change. It was not the sort of finding that Texas governor Rick Perry—long a skeptic, even outright denier, of anthropogenic climate change—was liable to welcome.
Will More Smog Create Jobs? Republicans Think So.
August 29, 2011
Republicans continue to tout deficit reduction in the form of dramatic, immediate spending cuts as the best way to boost the economy. But with President Obama set to introduce a new jobs agenda after Labor Day, Republicans are now signaling they want to do something else, as well: Get rid of regulations. In a new memo released on Monday, House Majority Leader Eric Cantor produced a list of "Top 10 Job-Destroying Regulations," including new rules on pollution, labor organizing, and health insurance.
Are Obama And Bush Really The Same?
August 25, 2011
Yale Literature professor David Bromwich has a column in the Huffington Post that's primarily an attempt to push the meme "Bush-Obama Presidency." It does persuasively argue that President Obama has continued many of President Bush's policies in foreign affairs.
The Fatal Flaw in Industry’s Case Against Stricter Smog Rules
August 15, 2011
Recently, a choir of industry voices has risen up in opposition to strengthened controls on smog proposed by the Environmental Protection Agency. As with other recent environmental rules, opponents have made lots of noise about the potential economic harm and job losses, while attempting to downplay the environmental benefits. House GOP members, for example, decried the “potentially devastating impacts of [the EPA’s] proposed new standards on the U.S.