Yesterday the Obama Administration effectively outlawed coal as a fuel source and it underscores the importance of Congress severely circumscribing the authority of regulatory agencies.
The Environmental Protection Agency will issue the first limits on greenhouse gas emissions from new power plants as early as Tuesday, according to several people briefed on the proposal. The move could end the construction of conventional coal-fired facilities in the United States.
The proposed rule — years in the making and approved by the White House after months of review — will require any new power plant to emit no more than 1,000 pounds of carbon dioxide per megawatt of electricity produced. The average U.S. natural gas plant, which emits 800 to 850 pounds of CO2 per megawatt, meets that standard; coal plants emit an average of 1,768 pounds of carbon dioxide per megawatt.
By outlawing new coal-fired electric generation plants and ignoring nuclear power, the Administration has set in motion a plan to make the nation dependent upon natural gas and a mishmash of politically correct but non-viable sources such as solar and wind as older plants are decommissioned. Essentially, Obama has done via regulatory means what it could not accomplish in Congress: to set the trajectory for exorbitant electricity prices in the service of reducing "greenhouse gasses."
This is not a new problem. Indeed, last year Speaker Boehner wrote to Obama to complain that the Administration was not being forthcoming in disclosing its regulatory agenda and, as far as I can discern, was roundly ignored.
Whether it be in the form of directing you to purchase a product you don't wish to buy, telling religious organizations what they have to allow, or making electricity unaffordable, the cancerous growth of regulations presents the greatest danger to our liberty. Until the Congress decides to man up and take back the power that it has relinquished we are in a death spiral as a free people.