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EPA Crucifier Has a New Gig

Remember Al Armendariz, the former EPA regional administrator who got busted earlier this year for comparing his efforts to regulate energy companies to crucifixions?

Well, surprise surprise. The former employee of an administration that used the pretext of the BP oil spill in the Gulf to clamp down on oil drilling, pursued cap-and-trade and the regulation of greenhouse gas emissions, pushed the MACT rule targeting the coal-produced electricity industry, and nixed an air-permitting program in Texas, leading Texas to challenge the EPA in court, has a new gig.

Armendariz is the Sierra Club’s latest hire, and his new gig will put him in a prime position to advocate for “crucifixion” of the coal industry:

Former U.S. Environmental Protection Agency regional administrator Dr. Alfredo “Al” Armendariz will join the staff of the Sierra Club effective in mid-July as Senior Campaign Representative for the organization’s Beyond Coal campaign. Based in Austin, Dr. Armendariz will draw on his scientific expertise working on air, water, and climate science to help move Texas off coal-fired electricity and toward an economy powered by job-generating clean energy sources such as wind and the sun. 

The Sierra Club takes special pains to note that “Al has worked closely with the Sierra Club for many years…” Just in case you were wondering.

What does this mean for Texas? Well, previously, Armendariz had regulatory authority to do his “crucifying.” Now, he’s reliant on advocacy efforts directed at a compliant and complicit administration in order to accomplish that. But ultimately, the effects could be the same. 

In a state with a growing population that has one of a few thriving economies in the country, the objective is to make the supply of cheap electricity from an abundant, domestically-sourced fuel (coal) more limited, with the attendant negative consequences. 

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