In the year 2007 the United States Supreme Court made a landmark ruling that propelled events which culminated this week in Washington with the unveiling of new EPA standards on carbon emissions by new power plants in the United States. Back then, the concern over carbon emissions was raised in a lawsuit filed by the state of Massachusetts against the administration of George W. Bush, which lawsuit spawned the decision of the United States Supreme Court to rule that carbon dioxide, a gas which is colorless, odorless and overly abundant in the atmosphere, was indeed an air pollutant and was therefore within the regulations of the Environmental Protection Agency to take action against its further abuse and polluting affects.
Following their new duty as prescribed by the Supreme Court’s decision, the EPA, with firm backing from the White House, released a four hundred and sixty three page proposed regulation on carbon emissions by new power plants in the United States. The new regulations, which propose limits to the emissions of carbon dioxide among other emissions, have come under heavy fire from some representatives in congress and from the coal and energy industry as a whole.
Obama’s so called “war on coal”, which has produced the EPA’s new proposed regulation, has spurred many in the energy producing community and coal industry into political action against the new proposed regulations as the regulations could severely hamper business practices, production, and overall efficiency of energy plants. But, because the proposal is emanating from the EPA, an independent agency in the United States government, there are few things that congress can do to block the new proposals from being enacted by executive mandate from the White House.