By MARKWAYNE MULLIN
Over the last 10 months of the Trump Administration, we’ve seen more positive changes to our country’s economy than Congress accomplished in eight years of legislation under the Obama Administration.
We have made great progress rolling back harmful, job-killing regulations that hinder our economic growth. One of those harmful regulations is the EPA’s so-called Clean Power Plan which would negatively impact Oklahoma’s economy, energy grid, and workforce.
During the Obama Administration, there was a clear war on fossil fuels. I’ve been fighting to overturn the Clean Power Plan since it was proposed in 2015. It threatens the reliability of our energy resources, forces a tremendous regulatory burden on their production, raises electric costs for hardworking Oklahomans and puts good paying jobs at risk.
In 2016, the U.S. Supreme Court even ruled a historic stay on the unlawful rule, keeping it from going into effect.
This week under EPA Administrator Scott Pruitt, the EPA found the Clean Power Plan to be a flagrant abuse of power by the former administration, harming our energy sector and all of those that enjoy its products.
If the plan had gone into effect, Oklahomans were projected to see an increase in their electricity prices by 15 percent on average from 2017-2030. The Southwest Power Pool (SPP) projected that complying with the EPA’s 2030 deadline would cost $2.9 billion per year. Those costs would be passed onto Oklahomans each month when it came time to pay the electric bill.
The energy sector has already gone to tremendous lengths to manage and reduce their own carbon emissions.
In LeFlore County, the AES Shady Point co-generation facility is one of two AES plants across the nation going the extra mile to take care of their own backyard. It is the first coal-fired plant in the United States with the ability to turn its fossil fuel emissions into a food-grade carbon dioxide.
In 2015, they generated over 15,500 tons of dry ice and 61,287 tons of liquid food-grade carbon dioxide used for refrigeration and cooling. AES Shady Point is a great example of how protecting the environment by reducing emissions and protecting our economy and its job growth don’t have to be mutually exclusive.
The war on fossil fuels is no more. Our administration is dedicated to working alongside Congress to ensure that Oklahomans and all Americans have access to reliable, affordable electricity, a good paying job, and an economy that works for them.
Oklahoma is an all-of-the-above energy state and I’ll continue to ensure that the federal government doesn’t pick winners and losers in the energy sector. My priority is keeping the lights on in Oklahoma at a cost you can afford. The cancellation of the Clean Power Plan keeps the United States on that very path to energy independence.
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