Infrastructure & Environment

How Western Governors Feel About New EPA Rules

June 11, 2014

Ten western governors met Tuesday with Gina McCarthy, the Environmental Protection Agency administrator, to talk about cleaner power plant rules proposed by the Obama administration — including cuts in greenhouse gas emissions from coal. A sampling of what some governors have to say about it:

ARIZONA: GOP Gov. Jan Brewer objects to the EPA plan and believes the agency has overstepped its authority, her spokesman has said. Arizona state lawmakers passed a law in 2010 that bars new state rules or regional agreements to reduce greenhouse gases unless the Legislature approves. It's unclear how the EPA proposal will play out in Arizona.

COLORADO: Democratic Gov. John Hickenlooper said it was "refreshing" that McCarthy has been looking for input from governors on the EPA proposal. He noted that Colorado is moving to diversify its energy portfolio into an "all-of-the-above" approach. On climate change, he said, "I do think that climate change is being caused by mankind's activity."

KANSAS: Republican Gov. Sam Brownback was blunt in his assessment when the rules were announced. "This is more of the Obama administration's war against middle America," he said. Kansas relies on coal-fired plants for about 63 percent of the state's electricity.

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