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Cotton Writes EPA Administrator with Concerns about Cost Impacts of Pending Regulations


Washington, D.C.—Senator Tom Cotton (R-Arkansas) today sent a letter to Environmental Protection Agency Administrator Gina McCarthy about the agency’s pending carbon  regulations for existing power plants. In addition to expressing his opposition to the pending regulations, Senator Cotton also outlines his concern over how the EPA arrived at certain cost impacts of their regulations.  The letter reads, in part:

In reviewing the Regulatory Impact Assessment (RIA) prepared by the EPA in support of the proposed Clean Power Plan rule, you claim:

“We (EPA) estimate a 4 to 7 percent increase in retail electricity prices, on average, across the contiguous U.S. in 2020, and a 16 to 22 percent reduction in coal-fired electricity generation as a result of this rule.”

Page 7-9, Regulatory Impact Analysis for the Proposed Standards of Performance for Greenhouse Gas Emissions for New Stationary Sources: Electric Utility Generating Units

Your conclusion stands in contrast with concerns expressed by Arkansas-based stakeholders; specifically your RIA did not consider unrecoverable costs arising from the forced retirement of coal plants, thereby underestimating the true cost of your regulations. This model should be updated as soon as possible, as Congress has already begun consideration of legislative steps to address your misguided regulation. 

Senator Cotton goes on to ask Administrator McCarthy to—at the very least—revise these estimates before Congress takes action to protect ratepayers. The full text of the letter can be found here

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