Oct. 5, 2015 by James Goodwin

Ten Things I Hate About Jeb's Antiregulatory Regulatory Reform Plan

Consistent with his ongoing efforts to distinguish himself among the Republican presidential candidates as a serious “policy wonk,” Jeb Bush, “rolled out” his “regulatory reform” plan last week.  The sad truth, though, is that the plan contains little of what might be considered sober or intellectually rigorous.   Rather, it is simply a mishmash of warmed over ideas from candidate Mitt Romney’s 2012 regulatory reform plan and from the various antiregulatory bills that have been festering in Congress the last several years, all served on a wilted bed of misleading data, astounding leaps of logic, and outright falsehoods.

To see why this plan would be such a bad deal for the American people, consider the following 10 points:

  1. It relies on unreliable or misleading empirical data. Jeb simply does what countless other regulatory opponents have done before him:  He attempts to create an alternative reality in which our regulatory system is out-of-control by citing data that are either based on flawed accounting or that don’t actually say what he claims they do.  For example, Jeb’s plan cites misleading World Bank data about the apparent difficulty of starting a business in the United States, which Kevin Drum at Mother …

Oct. 1, 2015 by Thomas McGarity

The new primary ozone standard of 70 parts per billion (ppb) is definitely a step in the right direction, but it has taken EPA far too long to make this much-needed change.

We should not forget, however, that EPA Administrator Lisa Jackson sent a proposed standard of 65 ppb to the White House in August 2011, but was told explicitly by President Obama to withdraw it because the White House economists thought it would be too costly for business, despite the fact that this delay came at the expense of the health of vulnerable Americans.

The Supreme Court has held that the Clean Air Act prohibits EPA from taking such cost considerations into account when setting the standards, but that does not stop affected industries from railing against any protections the agency promulgates to protect public health.

We can expect the regulated industries to complain that a …

Oct. 1, 2015 by Joseph Tomain

Two of the most important aspects of the Clean Power Plan (CPP) are the flexibility afforded states as they design compliance strategies and the plan’s openness to all energy resources. A state can satisfy its emission-reduction targets through the use of cleaner or more efficient coal-fired generation, natural gas or nuclear power as well as through increased use of renewable resources and energy efficiency. Regardless of this flexibility and openness, investor-owned utilities (IOUs), which have dominated the electricity market for more than a century, tend to resist the imposition of additional environmental regulations. Some resistance is predictable as utilities have sunk trillions of dollars of investments into the construction of generation, transportation and distribution networks..

While this resistance may be understandable, there are two significant rebuttal arguments to it. First, utilities have demonstrated remarkable resilience, particularly over the last three or more decades, to dramatic challenges …

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