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  • Published: Nov 28th, 2008
  • Category: USA
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USA: EPA Asks Texas to Reduce Carbon Emissions


| Sourced From Softpedia |

The Environment Protection Agency (EPA) is forced by a Supreme Court decision to start regulating the greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions of all states, under the new Cleaner Air Act bill. Its proposal for the state of Texas was met with extreme hostility by Governor Rick Perry, who said yesterday that implementing the measure the federal agency proposed is currently impossible, seeing the large amount of energy derived from fossil fuels the state produces for the entire country.

“Implementing such regulations would cripple the Texas’ energy sector, irreparably damaging both the state and national economies, and severely impacting national oil and gas supplies. Costly regulation that reduces our ability to provide energy and other products to the nation will have a disproportionate impact on Texas,” Perry said in a statement it sent to Stephen Johnson, the EPA Administrator.

Though carbon is the main GHG blamed for global warming, and Texas relies heavily on fossil fuels for producing electrical energy, Perry says that a regulation in the field will severely affect the oil refineries and natural gas plants, which currently supply 20 percent of production and 30 percent, respectively.

Also, approximately 60 percent of America’s chemical manufacturing capacity is concentrated in this area alone. These industries are bound to be affected by the new proposed regulations, seeing how they are the ones that pollute most.

On the bright side of things, Texas is also the state with most wind farms in the United States, and produces most energy from renewable sources. It will also become home to 3 new nuclear power plants, though water shortages may impede the new structures from working at full capacity.

The measure could “generate 123,000 more jobs than we would lose by regulating and cutting global warming emissions,” said Tom Smith, the head of Public Citizen’s Texas Office. Sierra Club’s Lone Star Chapter spokesman, Cyrus Reed, added that “Global warming regulation is coming and that is why it is important that the governor work with the Legislature to get ready.”

Regulating CO2 emissions could cost anywhere between $40 and $80 million yearly, said an estimate that Perry requested after it received the EPA proposal. Environmentalists argue that this is a very small amount, compared to the big bucks that are produced by the oil industry. And adding CO2 traps, and promoting energy efficiency, this goal can be achieved easily, they say.

By Tudor Vieru

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