On January 1st, the Environmental Protection Agency began implementing new regulations that are a complete overreach of the agency’s authority. Across the country they have begun to set up a “cap and trade” style licensing system, claiming it’s necessary to force states to comply with federal green house gas emissions standards.
Texas has chosen to fight the EPA, and with good reason.
Texas’ economy has long out performed other state economies. But make no mistake – that prosperity has not come from ignoring the need for better air quality standards. Since 2000, green house gas emissions have fallen by 16 percent in North Texas even as the region's population has grown 24 percent. Energy means jobs in Texas: 400,000 of them to be precise. Texas leads the nation in oil and gas refining operations, accounting for more than one-fourth of all domestic refining capacity.
Our state’s refusal to use the arbitrary greenhouse gas emission permit process prompted the EPA to announce last month that it would take over the job. The permitting requirement would lead to higher costs for producers and consumers and would mean fewer jobs in the long run. Once again, unelected federal bureaucrats are putting politics before smart economic policy and are now attempting to make Texas a victim of onerous regulations.
While the EPA may not be directly accountable to voters, they have to be responsive to Congress. I want to assure you that this fight is far from over. I am proud to stand with many of my colleagues in the Texas delegation in doing all we can to make sure Washington does not stop the progress and prosperity we enjoy in our state.