Disapproving of EPA’s CO2 Regulations

Nicolas Loris /

Environmental Protection Agency

Whatever prospects lie ahead for cap and trade legislation moving through the Senate might not matter if the Environmental Protection Agency continues forward on its path to regulate carbon dioxide. The EPA’s endangerment finding, which took place earlier this year, gives the agency the authority to use Clean Air Act to regulate greenhouse gases (GHGs). New restrictions on automobiles were the first step in what could eventually be a long, economically painful set of regulations imposed by unelected government bureaucrats – unless Congress steps up to the plate and stops them.

Lisa Murkowski’s (R–AK) resolution of disapproval would do just that. As Heritage Senior Policy Analyst Ben Lieberman explains, “In order to provide a means of stopping unwarranted or ill-advised regulations, Congress and President Clinton enacted the Congressional Review Act in 1996. The statute allows Congress to pass, by simple majority and with limited debate time, a resolution of disapproval against any newly promulgated federal regulation it opposes, thus revoking the regulation. It is hard to imagine a more appropriate application of the Congressional Review Act than a disapproval against the EPA’s attempt to regulate energy use in the name of addressing global warming.”