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Republicans May Block Funds For EPA Emissions Rules

Derek Wallbank, Bloomberg

Republicans will try to block the Environmental Protection Agency’s proposed greenhouse-gas rule by denying the funding to implement it, according to a senior member of a U.S. House appropriations panel.

The funding ban “will be in Interior,” Idaho Republican Mike Simpson said, referring to the spending bill being drafted for the Department of Interior and EPA. Simpson, head of the House’s Energy-Water Appropriations subcommittee, formerly chairman of the Interior and Environment appropriations panel.

“We’re going to take a serious look at it,” Representative Ken Calvert, a California Republican and chairman of the Interior-Environment subcommittee, said in a separate interview at the Capitol.

“It wouldn’t surprise me” if a funding ban were included in the money bill his panel is crafting, he said. “There’s great interest from a lot of members.”

The EPA’s proposed carbon rule, released earlier this month, would require state-by-state limitations on carbon dioxide emissions that would reduce the national output by 17 percent from current levels by 2030.

Because the spending bill must pass to keep the Interior Department and the EPA running, it’s an attractive vehicle for bringing media and public attention to the emissions issue. Republicans would embrace a pitched battle over a carbon rule they say will kill jobs in coal-rich parts of the country.

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