The Obama administration’s restrictions on carbon dioxide emissions will lead to blackouts in the winter months, US Senator James Inhofe (R-Oklahoma) is warning.
Inhofe believes that the shutdown of older coal-burning power plants because of Environmental Protection Agency restrictions will result in electricity shortages and power outages, unless the EPA reverses itself.
“If this recent cold weather occurs again in a year or two when these plants are shut down there simply will not be enough electricity available to keep homes and businesses warm,” Inhofe said Tuesday in a speech on the Senate floor. “It could result in massive blackouts. When Americans need their electricity it will not be there. It will be as if we’re living in the 1600s and everyone will be cold.”
“These coal-fired power plants which were critical to keeping homes all around the country warm during the cold temperatures are going to be shut down because of Obama’s environmental regulations,” Inhofe added.
Inhofe was introducing a bill, the Electricity Reliability and Affordability Act, which would allow states and not the federal government to determine what happens to power plants.
Inhofe predicts Electricity Shortages Next Year
Electricity shortages would already be occurring if the new restrictions on greenhouse gases were in effect, Inhofe charged. He cited information provided by a utility called American Electric Power to back up his argument.
“American Electric Power reported that during the recent cold weather, they were running 89 percent of the coal generation it must retire by 2015,” Inhofe stated in a press release.
“These regulations if finalized would impose strict regulations on new power plants that would make it impossible to build a new coal power plant,” Inhofe said.
Some Power Plants Already Shutting Down
Some companies are already shutting down coal-fired plants because of the EPA regulations, Off the Grid News recently reported. Around 40 percent of the electricity in the United States is generated by burning coal.
The new rules would require power plants to capture all carbon dioxide they make. Critics have claimed that technology does not exist.
Inhofe alleges that President Obama is defying Congress by using EPA regulations to implement restrictions on greenhouse gases.
“What we all need to be aware of is that the impact of the President’s climate action plan when implemented will be stunning if we completely adopt global warming policies and regulations like cap and trade,” Inhofe alleged.
“The climate action plan the president is now trying to accomplish by regulation what he couldn’t achieve through legislation,” Inhofe said.
Inhofe also alleged that the President had deliberately delayed the rules so they would not go into effect until after the 2012 election.
“His actions show that it’s okay to wait to finalize rules that will harm the economy until after the elections,” Inhofe said. “Ultimately this hypocrisy reveals that the administration is fully aware that the EPA’s greenhouse gas regulations will put a drag on the economy.”
Inhofe also criticized the administration’s support for cap and trade, which would set additional limits on greenhouse gases. Environmentalists claim it is the cheapest way to control greenhouse gases. Critics like Inhofe have called it a tax. Under cap and trade, plants who emit lots of greenhouse gases could “purchase” the ability to continue doing so.
“The cap and trade legislation that we debated for over the last 10 years carries a price tag of $300 to $400 billion a year,” Inhofe said. “It would have been the largest tax increase in American history.”
Inhofe said that only 25 percent of members of Congress voted for cap and trade.
Average People Need to Be Concerned
Inhofe’s remarks reveal why families and businesses need to consider generating their own heat and electricity. The electricity that so many of us depend on may not be available from the grid in the near future.