texasreply

The battle of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency's attempt to regulate greenhouse gas emissions continues, as Texas filed a brief with the DC Circuit Court of Appeals in Washington on Jan. 7. The brief contended the state should have an extended period of time to come into compliance without the federal government’s interference.

EPA filed a brief on Jan. 6 saying that under the Clean Air Act, the states and federal government are “partners”’ in the mission of improving U.S. air quality. But EPA said it is the “ultimate supervisor’’ if a state fails to develop or enforce an acceptable plan. Twelve other states continue to work with EPA to develop process guidelines.

The brief that Texas filed with the Court on Jan. 7 said EPA did not follow procedures to seize control of the state’s permit process and did not provide sufficient notice or open the decision to comment. EPA was slated to provide a review and comment period for at least 30 days. The state said EPA gave Texas about two weeks’ notice that it was taking over permitting, providing no comment period. The brief contended that the state should have had three years to come into compliance and draft its own permit process before the federal government could take over.

EPA said Texas refused to explain how it would regulate greenhouse gas emissions. Texas officials notified EPA on Oct. 4, 2010 that it would not accept a Dec. 22, 2010 deadline.

Meanwhile on Capitol Hill, U.S. lawmakers introduced at least four bills to slow or altogether block the Environmental Protection Agency from working on greenhouse gas standards.

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