Funny thing happens as time marches on, we progress. Things change. Sometimes we find better ways to do everything, from modes of travel to curing diseases.
The same thing goes for energy. And yet Republicans don’t want to move into the new millennium. I’d like to shake the hand of the guy who convinced conservatives that rubbing two sticks together wasn’t the best way to light a fire. Thanks to Matchboxes Inc., they scientifically proved that was not the case.
So our conspiratorial Republican big oil lackeys rolled out a group of sad sack CEO victims who, like unlike Match Boxes Inc., merely claimed our actual environmental, wildlife and health officials were trying to destroy their industry and charge families unheard of energy price like we’re already paying for fossil fuel. Oh, and forget about the cost of coal going up because fewer companies are mining due to a lack of demand:
Fox News: A Senate subcommittee on Tuesday heard witnesses argue that “sue-and-settle” legal arrangements involving the EPA, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service and hyper-aggressive environmental organizations have cut energy suppliers and state regulators out of the discussion, speeded up the agenda to force unrealistic environmentalist priorities on the energy market, and are likely to cost consumers and producers billions of dollars in the years ahead.
Why wouldn’t you believe big oil special interests and their “scientifically” researched fear mongering, their eyes look so sad:
“The sue-and-settle model takes policy making away from the public and puts it into the hands of one special interest driving an agenda to ultimately prevent the use of fossil fuels,” declared Katherine Sgamma, vice-president of the Western Energy Alliance, a Colorado-based lobbying organization for small oil and gas producers.
See, Western Energy Alliance is obviously unbiased and only trying to protect the 5 mega oil monopolies from a few startup “special interests” moguls in the wind and solar industries, whoever they are.
Adding insult to injury, the heartless Fish and Wildlife Service schemed with environmentalists to protect 404 threatened and endangered species. What the heck?
In lawsuits involving the Endangered Species, Sgamma noted that after the Fish and Wildlife Service made a deal with one environmental organization that involved 404 threatened or endangered species, the same organization came back the next year with demands involving 53 more.
And the lunacy of cutting down on preventable deaths and saving hundreds of billions of dollars in lost work and health care costs, is one reason big oil special interests are so frustrated:
In the case of the Clean Power Plan, the “artificial urgency” of the legal effort has been “key to push the regulations out the door, rush an incredibly complex and expensive rule through standard regulatory review processes, steamroll any potential political opposition, and put pressure on the states to begin compliance activities immediately,” argued Andrew Grossman, an adjunct scholar at the libertarian Cato Institute.
Calling the Clean Power Plan announced Monday a “naked power grab” that imposes national standards on state regulators, Grossman charged that “at every step of the way, EPA has relied on sue-and-settle tactics to facilitate its outrageous conduct.”
Of course you have to believe the courts are willy nilly ruling against big energy for the fun of it, and because of liberal judicial activism. Thank god Republicans still believe in federalism:
“This is not how the regulatory process is supposed to work in a country founded on the principles of the rule of law and federalism.”
Republicans, who've been depleting state environmental agencies for years, are now concerned the remaining staff will be overwhelmed by court ordered environmental compliance before it’s all too late for all of us:
Sue-and-settle “overwhelms regulatory agencies, resulting in settlement agreements and consent decrees requiring agencies to promulgate major regulations within an arbitrarily imposed timeline,” said Senator Mike Rounds, R-S.D., who chaired the subcommittee hearing.
Of course states wouldn’t find themselves in this mess if they just did their job enforcing the law.
In the blog post, General Counsel, Avi Garbow, declared that “the ‘sue-and-settle’ rhetoric, strategically mislabeled by its proponents, is an often-repeated but a wholly invented accusation that gets no more true with frequent retelling.” EPA, he said, had no control over who decided to sue the agency, and “is not complicit in such lawsuits.”