The largest type of energy source in the state comes from natural gas, but business leaders, state officials and electric companies are still concerned about the proposed rules from the Environmental Protection Agency.
Fronteras: The Democrat facing newly-nominated Republican Dan Patrick in the Texas lieutenant governor race says Sen. Patrick’s pledge to campaign in the minority community is “insulting.” New EPA rules to cut carbon emissions are expected to be unveiled soon. The new rules are expected to spur the use of a so-called clean coal technology. There are fewer than 100 fluent speakers of Kumeyaay left in Southern California and northern Baja California, where they once dominated. Efforts are now underway to preserve the endangered language.
Texas Matters: Even with state leadership that staunchly opposed the Affordable Care Act and did what they could to hold it up, Texas numbers look good. Also on this show: Texas loses against the EPA, implications of botched Oklahoma execution.
The U.S. Supreme Court has ruled in favor of the Environmental Protection Agency’s 2011 Cross-Border Pollution Provision that was added to the Federal Clean Air Act. The State of Texas led the opposition against the provision, which was meant to address air pollution drifting into neighboring states.
Supreme Court justices voted to overturn the lower court’s ruling on a vote of 6-2 in favor of the EPA’s rule that is designed to curb air pollution from coal-fired power plants that are located in 28 states.
A major climate change initiative by the Obama administration has been challenged. The White House, in an re-interpretation of the Clean Air Act, enacted stricter regulations for greenhouse gases, and stated it would begin permitting polluters.
Today the Supreme Court hears arguments in Texas v. EPA. Texas' permitting system for air polluters predates the EPA and the state believes it has done and can do a better job of the permitting.
Officials with the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality and the Environmental Protection Agency have reached an agreement as it pertains to Texas’ clean air plan. The resolution allows major polluters like oil refineries some flexibility on clean air permits.
Texas Environmentalists and Attorney General Greg Abbott are pleased that the U.S. Supreme Court is willing to hear the case regarding how the Environmental Protection Agency will regulate power plant greenhouse gases.
"We hope the Supreme Court rules in the EPA’s favor -- that they adopt the standards -- however, even if they don’t the EPA does have other ways to get at this issue," said Luke Metzger, executive director of Environment Texas.
Metzger said the EPA could rewrite the rules and target chemical pollutant that is emitted with the carbon gases.
New Environmental Protection Agency rules for power plants go into effect on Sept. 20 and a new report details how Texas power plants are one of the leading causes of global warming in the country.
Environment Texas Executive Director Luke Metzger said their study shows Texas is the leading nation when it comes to power plant pollution. Texas is home to two of the dirtiest plants in the United States in the Martin Lake Plant, located south of Longview, and the W.A. Parish Plant, which is just outside of Houston.
Last week President Obama announced that he would be directing the Environmental Protection Agency to enforce stricter rules on new and existing coal plants, marking some of his more ambitious climate change efforts.
"We don't have time for a meeting of the flat earth society," remarked Obama at his June 25 press conference regarding why he would be going directly through the EPA as opposed to through congress for a deal on climate change.