Wyoming Republican Sens. Mike Enzi and John Barrasso are disappointed after a failed attempt to block the Environmental Protection Agency from setting the first federal standards to reduce toxic air pollution from power plants.
The Democrat-controlled Senate defeated the Republican effort today/Wednesday to overturn a regulation to slash mercury and other toxic emissions from the oldest and most polluting oil- and coal-fired power plants in the country.
Senator Enzi spoke on the Senate floor and argued that the EPA rule would strike a fatal blow to the coal industry by causing many coal power plants to shut down.
"Simply put, the coal industry puts people to work. In an economy that is struggling to recover, the coal industry provides high paying jobs for workers in Wyoming and other coal producing states like West Virginia, Pennsylvania and Virginia. With the tremendous benefits that coal can provide it’s puzzling to me that the administration seeks to end our use of this important, affordable energy source. "
Meanwhile, fellow Wyoming U-S Senator John Barrasso says the rule does little to protect public health. But supporters disagree. The White House released a statement saying that "The Mercury and Air Toxics Standards will ensure that the nation's power plants install modern, widely available technologies to limit harmful pollution -- leveling the playing field for power plants that already have such controls in place.”