Wicker, Hyde-Smith Join Challenge to Destructive Biden Energy Plan

Miss. Senators, Colleagues Assert EPA Exceeded Authority with Unlawful Clean Power Plan 2.0

August 3, 2023

WASHINGTON – U.S. Senators Roger Wicker, R-Miss., and Cindy Hyde-Smith, R-Miss., are among 39 Republican Senators urging Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) Administrator Michael Regan to withdraw his agency’s unlawful “Clean Power Plan 2.0,” a plan that will effectively shut down affordable and reliable energy and intensify the energy shortage the United States is already facing.

The demand is made in a letter initiated by Senate Environment and Public Works Committee Ranking Member Shelley Moore-Capito, R-W.Va.

“The EPA has again grossly misinterpreted the scope of authority Congress granted under Section 111 of the Clean Air Act by proposing a rule that would require generation shifting and transform our nation’s power sector with neither a clear and explicit congressional authorization nor adequate process as required under the Administrative Procedure Act,” the Senators wrote.

“As you know, the power plants being targeted by this rule are not only having to comply with this regulation.  They are also being targeted by the agency’s overarching power plant strategy, called the Electric Generating Unit (EGU) Strategy, as a way to shutter fossil-fuel power plants and bolster President Biden’s climate goals.  If the proposed Clean Power Plan 2.0 is finalized along with the rest of the EGU Strategy, our country will face a crisis in electricity supply that will dwarf the regional outages that we have seen in California, Texas, and New England in recent years,” the Senators wrote. “We request the EPA expeditiously withdraw this unlawful proposal.”

Issued by the Biden administration’s EPA in May, the Clean Power Plan 2.0 would require almost all fossil fuel plants to cut or capture nearly all their CO2 emissions.  If finalized, the rule will mark the first time the federal government has limited carbon emissions from existing power plants.  Approximately 60 percent of the country’s electricity comes from fossil fuels, including 22 percent from coal, according to 2021 data from the Energy Information Agency (EIA).

The proposed rule requires fuel switching, which directly conflicts with the Supreme Court’s ruling in West Virginia v. EPA.  The proposal’s “best system of emission reduction” has not been adequately demonstrated, as required by the Clean Air Act.

The letter to Regan was also signed by Republican Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., and U.S. Senators John Barrasso, R-Wyo., Marsha Blackburn, R-Tenn., John Boozman, R-Ark., Mike Braun, R-Ind., Katie Britt, R-Ala., Ted Budd, R-N.C., Bill Cassidy, M.D., R-La., Tom Cotton, R-Ark., Keven Cramer, R-N.D., Mike Crapo, R-Idaho, Ted Cruz, R-Texas, Steve Daines, R-Mont., Joni Ernst, R-Iowa, Deb Fischer, R-Neb., Lindsey Graham, R-S.C., Bill Hagerty, R-Tenn., John Hoeven, R-N.D., James Lankford, R-Okla., Mike Lee, R-Utah, Cynthia Lummis, R-Wyo., Roger Marshall, M.D., R-Kan., Jerry Moran, R-Kan., Markwayne Mullin, R-Okla., Jim Risch, R-Idaho, Pete Ricketts, R-Neb.,  Mitt Romney, R-Utah, Marco Rubio, R-Fla., Rick Scott, R-Fla., Tim Scott, R-S.C., Dan Sullivan, R-Alaska, John Thune, R-S.D., Thom Tillis, R-N.C., Tommy Tuberville, R-Ala., J.D. Vance, R-Ohio, and Todd Young, R-Ind.

Read the letter in full here.