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tv   Key Capitol Hill Hearings  CSPAN  September 12, 2015 4:00am-6:01am EDT

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>> i understand what you're saying here. please disagree with this. but your thinking is once the judicial process is over, and it gets into the executive issue about clemency and mercy, president assisi is saying, look, at that point he will be exercising it? >> what i'm saying is, at that point we have the relationships built. we have the ability to access the decision-makers. and if our relationship is strong and growing, we have hopefully the leverage to make our voice heard. >> can you please confirm this is correct. we understand about 40,000 people have been, over the last year or so, been detained in prison, and some are being tortured. are you able to give us any idea
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as to how extensive that is, and if that is accepted, that is the situation again? >> i wouldn't disagree with the number. i don't have an exact number, but i wouldn't disagree with that number. and we -- i mean, egypt is facing a counterterrorism crisis. but our consistent advice to the egyptians is by confusing the counterterrorists' response with a broader political clamp-down that they're making a mistake, that will ultimately be -- it would mean that the policy is unsuccessful. we consistently explained to the egyptians and to others that our own experiences, the way to deal with a terrorism threat is to focus on isolating the hard-core terrorists from the soft-core passive supporters.
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and clamping down on the soft-core passive support is not in the end a successful strategy. so we do not think that rounding up thousands of people, tens of thousands of people is a credible counterterrorism response. we explained that quietly, patiently, using examples from our own history. and we try to persuade, to encourage, to inform in a way that we hope will lead to a more productive and constructive approach in the future. but we can only do that by engaging. >> to clarify, i think myself, and a few people here, agree that the engagement is the way forward. but obviously these issues have an origin. >> i understand. >> just finally on egypt, given the seriousness of the
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indictment, the essential indictment around the actions of the egyptian government in august 2013, that there's some suggestion there might be third-party action to cease and detain. on charges of crimes against humanity. do you have any concern about that, if he does come to -- >> yes. as a head of state, he will come with special exemptions. >> i think -- one further question on one other subject. and then i think we're dry. >> taking on the point about
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engaging people. i agree with that. we've had a discussion earlier about -- >> i famously did that. >> would it be all right to say, would you agree with this, that we hear about all the people leaving, and the mass exodus taking place in syria over the last number of years. actually, the way it's been reported, we know that there are a large number of people fleeing syria from the urban areas. it's because of the bombs thrown by sudan, and -- sorry. assad. and then the military description as well, people are running away from it.
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do we not feel that there should be other solutions looked at in relation to assad as well? i know you said there's a distinction between not wanting to get too involved with syria, but -- >> it's not -- >> in terms of not necessarily -- >> yes. the precise points that were from the first 45 minutes of the session. >> but the no-fly zone, for example. >> the problem with no-fly zones is they only work if someone's prepared to police them. and syria has a sophisticated air defense system, provided by russia, probably operated in part by russian technicians. and i am not aware of a competent air force that is
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offering to police a no-fly zone. a no-fly zone which exists only on paper, like a yellow line without the parking warden, is, i'm afraid, undermines credibility. if we're going to talk about no-fly zones, and, you know, let's say we, the united kingdom, if we are going to talk about no-fly zones, we'd better be clear that we are prepared to share in policing them. and i don't think we are. >> mike? >> on that point, while it's said that syria has an air system, would it not be possible to actually engage by firing from aircraft carriers parked somewhere in the mediterranean, just taking out one or two of the helicopters which are currently dropping the barrel bombs, and then given that assad doesn't have limitless number of
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helicopters, he doesn't have very large numbers i was told. and if it's true, about 60 or so, maybe more than that. but the fact is, a symbolic shooting down of one or two of these helicopters might then encourage the other pilots not to be flying them, and then saving the lives of very large numbers of civilians, and perhaps potentially reducing the number of people who have to leave syria in order to live. >> that's a different strategy from a no-fly zone, seeking to destroy the air assets that assad is using to bomb syrian people. and it's a perfectly possible military strategy. i don't know whether you're suggesting an appetite for such action on the part of the uk. >> i'm not saying the uk alone. i think the uk, the united states, and other countries are
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making it very clear they want to stop the barrel bombing of the civilian population in cities in syria. >> that's very interesting. of course, it was your party that proposed a very -- it was your party that opposed -- or proposed -- >> i've said that publicly. maybe you should get with your colleagues to -- >> i mean, i think the answer -- i'll follow up by saying that syria's defenses -- defense systems are sophisticated. i think there's a slight temptation to forget that. in all the actions that have taken place, the syrians have not ever engaged with allied aircraft. they clearly made a decision not to engage all lied aircraft. because allied aircraft are not targeting syrian forces, they're targeting isil forces. but they have the capability both air defense and coastal
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batteries. and i think it would be a very big decision to start using coalition assets to directly attack syrian government operational assets. that would be a major step. and i think it would need to be thought about extremely carefully. >> there's one final question on egypt. >> this commission has visited egypt. we met with the president. and we discussed the constraints on the freedom of expression in egypt. and particularly, the imprisonment of the al jazeera journalists. he gave the impression that -- very clearly, that it was an embarrassment to him. that it was something that had happened before he came on the scene.
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and that he wished it hadn't been so. i wanted to see if there was any kind of progress in continuing to discuss with the egyptians about the journalist that has just been sentenced again? >> think it goes back to the exchange i had earlier that there's a distinction between the judicial part of the system and executive part of the system. and the new sentences that have just been handed down are judicial sentences. i haven't yet discussed this case, myself, with our egyptian interlock you turs since that. mr. elwood will be having that discussion this afternoon. and i'll be interested to hear from him what he has said about the current executive thinking about this process. none of this is quick. because the egyptian justice system doesn't necessarily work
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very quickly. but i have no reason to believe that the president's position has changed. >> secretary of state, thank you very much indeed for your time this afternoon. on the next "washington journal," darrell kim basketball of the arms control association, he discusses the iran nuclear deal and the state of nonproliferation. the national journal political editor has the latest on the hillary clinton e-mail investigation. and the recent effort by some republican candidates to stand up to donald trump. ashley messenger, associate general counsel, talks about a french privacy regulator that's ordered google to censure its search results in the name of privacy. and we'll take your calls and you can join the conversation at
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facebook and twitter. "washington journal," live at 7:00 a.m. eastern on c-span. this weekend on the c-span networks, politics, books, and american history. on c-span saturday at 8:00 p.m., speeches by two republican presidential candidates, first wisconsin governor scott walker vis tats president reagan's alma mater, eureka college. then louisiana governor bobby jindal at the national press club. sunday at 6:35 p.m., two profile interviews with former new york governor george pataki, talking about his political career. and former pennsylvania senator rick santorum talks about his time in congress. his 2012 presidential run, and why he's running again. on c-span2's book tv, saturday at 8:45 p.m., jack cashill talks
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about the scarlet letters. it argues progressives have become intolerant of opposing views. and senator klobuchar on 8:00 p.m. clemson university paul christopher anderson teaches a class on hour confederates viewed reconstruction in the wake of the civil war. he discusses how some white southerners justify and even romanticize their defeat and motives for fighting. sunday afternoon at 2:00 p.m., the landmark u.s. supreme court decision ruled it was unconstitutional to prohibit interracial marriage. at the virginia historical society, history professor walenstein talks about the complexities of the case, and
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how it affected similar legal challenges. get our complete schedule at c-span.org. next, a hearing on the epa's new power plant emissions rule. the house science, space and technology subcommittee on environment met friday to consider the impact on states. this is about two hours. >> the subcommittee on the environment will come to order. without objection, the chair is authorized to declare recesses of the subcommittee at any time. welcome to today's hearing entitled state perspectives, how the epa's power plan of shut down power plants. i recognize myself for five minutes for an opening statement. today's hearing focuses on the
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epa's final clean power plan rule, and the tremendous impact that this rule will have on the states upon final implementation. i'm very concerned about how this regulation will affect the economy of america. more specifically, access to cheap and abundant traditional energy sources, as well as affordable and reliable electricity. today i look forward to hearing testimony from state regulators about how this rule will specifically impact the citizens of their states. the negative impacts of epa's supposed clean power plan are well documented. a few months ago, we heard from industry groups about some of these impacts. the committee learned that the total compliance costs of the rule could be as high as $366 billion by the year 2030. additionally, according to the national association of manufacturers, the regulation is projected to cause double-digit electricity pricing increases in 43 states. moreover, the committee has heard testimony that the epa is using questionable legal
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authority to promulgate the clean power plan under section 111 of the clean air act. in fact, lawrence tried, the leading environmental and constitutional professor and mentor to president obama referred to the method by which the rule was enacted as, quote, burning the constitution, unquote. this committee has also heard testimony at previous hearings that the climate benefits from any reductions in carbon emissions realized by the rule will be negligible on a global scale. we have a rule that the place tremendous costs on the american people for very little benefit, if you believe the models that we've been given by the administration. the u.s. energy information administration reaffirmed many of these facts in a report analyzing the impact of the clean power plan. the committee heard testimony from howard grewenexpect at eia who reported the epa's rule will shut down large numbers of coal-fired power plants,
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increase electricity prices, and decrease the u.s. gdp. many states, including the ones that have -- that we have represented before us today have pushed back on the massive overreach of epa's carbon emission rule. states are uniquely positioned to protect the environment in their states and support their local economies. a key fact that the epa disregarded, in promulgating this rule. my home state of oklahoma which has been leading the charge against epa's onerous rule recognizes this rule will harm reliability and impose massive costs on its citizens. i applaud oklahoma's efforts to fight against the epa and its activist overbearing regulatory agenda. this committee has called many hearings conducting oversight of epa's regulatory agenda and will continue to do so. in order for the american people to understand how this will impact their lives. i thank all of our witnesses for testifying today and i look forward to hearing how the epa's final clean power plan will impact your states.
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i now recognize the ranking member, the gentle woman from oregon for an opening statement. >> thank you very much, mr. chairman. thank you to all of our witnesses for being here today, to discuss the environmental protection agency's clean power plan. i'm especially pleased to welcome mr. jason eisdorfer, a fellow oregonian. i'm looking forward to hearing about oregon's plan. and the successes our state has had in reducing greenhouse gas emissions. i'm glad the title is state perspectives. the mission of the epa is important yet simple. to protect human health and the environment. and the goal of the plan is equally simple, to cut carbon emissions from the largest power source, so that we can lessen the effects of climate change on our states, our country and our planet. the clean power plan offers enormous flexibility of the states as they tackle their
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individual carbon emissions targets. and the collective goal of reducing carbon emissions by 32% by the year 2030. in inaction is inacceptable. for example, according to the national climate assessment, the snow pack in the cascade mountains has decreased by 20% compared to 1950, and what snow remains melts about 30 days earlier than usual. these changes are putting additional pressure on the region's water supply. along the coastline, the health of our commercial fisheries are threatened by rising seas, and ocean acidification. thousands of salmon from the columbia river died this summer because the water's too warm. these and other changes have the potential to negatively affect not only the safety but also the economic security of my constituents. thankfully oregon is a state that has been proactive in efforts to mitigate and adapt to climate change. as a result, oregon can be a resource for states that are
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just beginning to address this important challenge. as a former member of the oregon legislature, i helped establish some of the state's goals. for example, in 2007, oregon set a target of reducing statewide emissions by 75%. by the year 2050. we also set the goal of having up to 25% of our energy generated through renewable sources by 2025. these efforts and others have put oregon in a position to not only meet, but likely surpass its clean power plan carbon reduction goal. and all of that while maintaining a healthy and vibrant economy. oregon is a leader in renewable energy technology, and many businesses have developed new products that add jobs to our economy and our energy efficiency. one example is lucid energy. which is developed technology to generate electricity through hydropowered system in existing city water pipes. some today will likely contend that regulating carbon hurts the
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economy. but a recent report by gps adds to the growing body of evidence showing that this simply is not the case. the report states, we are not climate scientists, nor are we trying to take sides in the global warming debate, rather we are trying to take an objective look at the economics of the discussion. to assess the incremental costs and impacts of mitigating the effects of emissions to see if there is a solution which offers global opportunities without penalizing global growth. the authors conclude the incremental costs of following a low carbon path are in context limited and seem affordable. the return on that investment is acceptable and moreover the likely avoided liabilities are enormous. when you have climate scientists and economists agreeing that action to address climate change is necessary, and that the benefits outweigh the risks, then it's time for our country to stop dragging its feet and
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move forward as a nation and a global leader. the clean power plan builds on the efforts of states like oregon by creating a unified national approach to our biggest environmental challenge. the clean power plan represents an opportunity for american inji new ti that will allow us to benefit from the much-needed transition to a low carbon economy. thank you, mr. chairman, and thank you to our witnesses for being here this morning. i want to ask that the gps report from which i quoted be entered into the record. >> without objection, so ordered. >> thank you, mr. chairman. i yield back the balance of my time. >> thank you. i now recognize the chairman of the full committee, mr. smith. >> thank you, mr. chairman. thank you also for holding this hearing today. over the last year, the environmental protection agency has released some of the most expensive and burdensome regulations in its history. these rules will cost billions of dollars, place a heavy burden on american families, and diminish the competitiveness of american workers around the world. today's hearing will examine the
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clean power plan, in the manner in which the epa has used secret science, questionable legal interpretations, and flawed analysis to place tremendous and unlawful burdens on the states. and yet despite these issues, this administration continues to force costly and unnecessary regulations on hard-working american families. in august, the obama administration ignored the outcry from stakeholders and from the american public when it issued the final rule on the power plan. the clean air act was never intended to regulate carbon. this final rule is another example of the president and his environmental protection agency sidestepping congress to push an extreme agenda. it is well documented that the final plan will shut down power plants across the country, increase electricity prices, and cost thousands of americans their jobs. my home state of texas would be one of the hardest hit. the state would be forced to close affordable coal-fired
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power plants which also provide reliable electricity during peak usage times in the summer. additionally, the rule will cause double-digit electricity price increases across the united states. despite epa's statements to the contrary, this rule goes well beyond the regulation of power plants, even reaching down into americans' homes to control electricity use. higher energy prices mean the price of everything will increase. and low-income families already struggling to make ends meet will be among those most burdened by this costly rule. the so-called clean power plan is simply a power grab that will force states to try to reach arbitrary and often impossible targets for carbon emissions. the epa asserts that the clean power plan will help combat climate change. however, epa's own data demonstrates this is false. the data shows that this regulation would at best reduce sea level rise by only .001 of
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an inch, the thickness of three sheets of paper. this rule represents massive cost without significant benefits. in other words, it's all pain and no gain. under the clean power plan, americans will be subject to the constant threat of government intervention, so the epa regulations continues. i look forward, mr. chairman, to today's hearing and to hearing from the witnesses about the impact of these burdensome regulations on their states. and i yield back. >> i thank you, chairman smith. i now recognize the ranking member of the full committee for her statement. >> good morning, mr. chairman. and thank you to all of our witnesses who are here. epa's clean power plan is a step in the right direction. the scientific evidence shows we cannot afford to wait. we must act now if we are to stand a chance of lessening
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impacts of climate change. record temperatures and increasing heavy rain events and rising seas are a few examples of what americans are confronting now, and can expect to see more frequently in the coming years. as the largest source of carbon pollution, cutting emissions from power plants is a key to any exclusisolution. that's why i'm supportive of the clean power plan. and its goal to reduce carbon emissions by 32% by 2030 from the power sector. the final rule we'll be discussing today is responsive to more than a 4 million public comments received by epa. it sets reasonable limits that take into account the characteristics of each state. it provides states with an
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additional two years to formulate and implement that compliance plan. it responds to concerns about grid reliability, by including a reliability safety valve, and requiring states to consider reliability concerns in their state implementation plans. and finally, the central feature of the rule is the enormous flexibility provided to states. epa is not prescribing any specific set of measures, but instead states will choose what goes into their plans, and they can work along or as part of a multi-state effort to achieve meaningful carbon reductions. today i suspect that we will hear some of the same old arguments about the clean power plan, that we hear about nearly every regulation issued by epa.
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that it will cause nothing but harm to our economy, that the federal government is overstepping its authority, that the rule is unnecessary, and that it won't make any difference in the long run. however, we know that these assertions are just not true. rather, as history has shown us time and again, stricter pollution limits have led to creation of new technologies, that end up creating jobs, while protecting our environment. i am confident american industry will continue this record of innovation and job creation as the clean power plan is implemented. additionally, and perhaps most importantly, the clean power plan sends a strong and much-needed signal to the rest of the world about the seriousness of the united states
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in addressing climate change. such a position is critical to meaningful international engagement on this issue. i recognize that implementing the clean power plan will not be easy, and there are real costs associated with transitioning to a low carbon economy. but the bottom line is that the cost of inaction are even greater. i look forward to today's discussion. and to hearing more about how we can achieve the mission target in the clean power plan. i thank you and yield back the balance of my time. >> thank you, ranking member johnson. to introduce our first witness, the chairman of the texas commission on environmental quality, dr. brian shaw. i yield to the chairman of the full committee, mr. smith. >> thank you, mr. chair. and let me say it's nice to be able to welcome a texas colleague.
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chairman shaw was appointed to the texas commission on environmental quality, tceq, in 2007. since then he has searched on the texas environmental flows advisory group and is chair of the texas advisory panel on federal environmental regulations. he was appointed chairman in 2009. prior to joining the txeq, he served as an environmental protection agency science advisory board committee on nitrogen. he also served on the epa sab environmental engineering committee in the ad hoc panel for risk and technology review assessment plan. additionally, he is a member of the u.s. department of agriculture, agricultural air quality task force. in addition to his chairmanship, dr. shaw serves as associate professor in the biological and agricultural engineering department of texas a&m university. his research there focuses on air pollution, air pollution
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abatement, dispersion model development, and emission factor development. chairman shaw received his masters and bachelors degrees from texas a&m. and his ph.d. in agricultural engineering from the university of illinois in champagne. thank you, mr. chairman. and i'm pleased that chairman shaw is here to testify. >> thank you, chairman smith. i will now yield to the gentleman from ohio, mr. johnson, to introduce our next witness, mr. craig butler, director of the ohio environmental protection agency. >> thank you, mr. chairman. and it is indeed my distinct pleasure to introduce director craig butler, the director of ohio's environmental protection agency. director butler received his bachelor's degree in geography and environmental science from mansfield university, and his master's degree in environmental science from ohio university. craig and his team have done some tremendous work for ohio.
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the respect that they have earned from people across our state, both within the energy sector, and in the state agencies is clear. their high standards of an exceptional work ethic is evident in everything that they do. for instance, the comments that director butler and his agency submitted to the u.s. epa in response to the clean power plan proposal are viewed by many as some of the most detailed, extensive, and informative comments that the u.s. epa received regarding this regulation. they clearly highlighted the many shortcomings of the clean power plan, such as its potential impact on grid reliability and energy costs. director butler, i want to personally thank you for being here today.
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i wish i could stay and hear the entire testimony, but with it being the last day of the week, we have multiple hearings in conflict. and so i've got to go to another hearing that is getting under way as we speak. but i want to reiterate, thank you so much. the work you're doing in ohio, and the example that you're setting across the nation, boy, i sure wish we could get along and work out a working relationship with the federal epa the way that we've done it in ohio. you're to be commended. and i welcome you. >> thank you, mr. johnson. our final witness today is mr. jason eisdorfer. utility program director for the oregon public utility commission. and i'd like to yield to the ranking member for an introduction. >> thank you very much, mr. chairman. it's my honor to introduce my fellow oregonian, mr. jo son
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eisdorfer, who has served as utility program director of the oregon public utility commission since 2012. he oversees a staff of approximately 77 employees and provides directions to formulate policies, recommendations and practices regarding the regulation of investor-owned utility, gas, water and telecommunications utilities. previously, mr. eisdorfer was interim director of strategy integration at the bonneville power administration. and before that, he served as bpa's greenhouse gas policy adviser. in this role, he served as senior adviser to the agency on policies and programs related to climate change. he served as legal counsel and director of the board of oregon for 13 years. his co-authored state legislation related to climate change in electric utility restructuring and operations, including the electricity restructuring law in 1999, and the oregon renewable energy act
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and climate changie integration act of 2007. his additional state legislation is concerning storage technology pilots, and natural gas utility, carbon reduction programs. mr. eisdorfer has served as an adjunct professor of law at oregon school of law and northwestern school of law at lewis and clark college. teaching classes on energy law and climate change and policy. he is a graduate of the university of chicago, and he received his law degree as i did from the university of oregon, go ducks. thank you for joining us today, mr. eisdorfer. >> thank you, ranking member bon a mitchy. in order to allow time for discussion, we're going to move to witness testimonies. please limit your testimony to five minutes. your entire written statement will be made a part of the official record. i now recognize chairman shaw for five minutes to present his testimony.
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>> mr. chairman, ranking member, thank you for the opportunity to be here. special thank you to chairman smith for the kind introduction. my name is dr. brian shaw, chairman of the texas commission on environmental quality. my job is to ensure we carry out mission, which is to mitt great environmental risk on sound science and compliance with state and federal statutes. in every case, where texas disagrees with epa actions, it's because they're in the consistent with these principles. the clean power plan was signed by the epa administrator on august 3rd, 2015, and is currently waiting publication in the federal register. the final version of the plan is raddic di different than epa's proposed plan. and as such, we're continuing to study and evaluate the impacts of the final rule. currently the following concerns associated with the rule have been identified. first, epa's methodology for determining the best system of emissions reduction, or bser, in
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this role marks a radical departure from historical practice, and i would argue the plain language of the clean air act. the epa asserted the power to determine best systems emissions reductions by evaluating deck nolgs and methods outside the fence of the facility that claims to be regulating. these methods could be applied to the source itself. or materials being used by the source. in the past, best systems evaluations have included installing scrubbers, low-emission technology, treatment of fuels and a myriad of other systems that the facility operator actually can control. in this case it's got an energy policy as a whole. the final clean power plan establishes rates for subcategories, steam generating units, and applying building blocks to the bser.
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the final rule allows states to use statewide goals, these goals are derived from the same performance rates. only the first of these blocks, the efficiency improvements, on existing coal-fired power plants is in the historical approach of how epa is determined bser in the past. redispatching generation from steam-generating units, and increased renewable energy on the increasing the generation of which most circumstances are not located in the same area. and for most forms of renewable energy, are not subject to the clean air act. it's based on the method of electric generation they prefer, not methods that can be feasibly applied to the existing sources. another major concern is that the plan has an insignificant effect on carbon dioxide concentrations, global temperatures and sea level rise. the final rule does not provide
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a benefit. the epa's benefits are based on the budgets, social cost of carbon. and that we put the united states in a stronger bargaining position at the president's upcoming climate summit in december. aside from objections i have to this line of reasoning, i submit a regulation this expensive that entails an unprecedented irrigation of power to the executive branch is fuzzy math. the epa is claiming wildly the claimed benefits. from the reduction of nongreenhouse gas pollutants, and these benefits are suspect. not only are they not the purpose of the plan, the majority of the claim benefits are due to changes in ambient concentrations of the ozone in areas already attained at the
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standards. it is irrational for the epa to claim pollution in the area that the current concentration is adequate to protect human health. in areas not attaining this standard, it requires the states to develop plans to address them. one final issue before i close would be a more technical concern about the leakage that the epa is including in the final rule. it's a shift of generation from existing units to new units not subject to the clean power plan. this results in a net increase in emissions and epa is requiring states that use a mass based approach address this leakage. also they approach to address that in the final plan if it includes a mass base approach. the motivation for the leakage policy is to remedy the nonsensical approach, much more stringent than the standards for new fossil fuels. you would have the more stringent standard for existing sources than for new. this makes that very detrimental
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and unworkable moving forward. it's important for me to bring this forward and i appreciate the opportunity to testify today. >> thank you, chairman shaw. director butler, you are recognized for five minutes. >> chairman, and ranking member, and members of the subcommittee, and representative bill johnson. thank you, my name is craig butler. i'm with the epa in ohio. thanks for the opportunity to provide testimony on the now final clean power plan issued by the u.s. environmental protection agent sill. when i provided testimony back in march, in the house subcommittee on energy and power, the cpp was only a proposal. the epa was in the process of collecting and evaluating what turned out to be over 3.4 million comments. while we continue to review the final rule, presented by u.s. epa, our fundamental and technical concerns persist or continue to grow. ohio has strifen to derive the output over the last few years,
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driven by affordable and reliable power, countless energy intensive industries including manufacturing, steel, glass production iron reside in ohio. this manufacturing rebound has been due in no small part to the shale gas production in the eastern part of the state, and like our locally mined coal that provides a foundation for predictable and relatively stable low-cost power to industries and citizens in the state of ohio. while working to revive our manufacturing output, we have achieved significant emission reductions from our coal-fired power plants. between 2005 and 2014, carbon dioxide emixes from these units were reduced by approximately 30%. given these reductions, one might think ohio is wl on a path to comply with a final cpp. unfortunately u.s. epa suggests using baseline for emissions since 2005, but in reality they're using 2012. emissions prior to that are not
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considered for compliance for the reduction target. it will continue to improve the operation efficiency, however, requiring additional pollution control measures will be costly and undermine long-term viability of these plans. ohio is experiencing a dramatic loss in generating capacity. losing some 6,100 megawatts between the years 2010 and 2015, primarily due to u.s. epa's mercury and air toxic standards. further reduction in the coal-fired generation is the biggest means for complying with the final cpp and a serious concern with respect to end users, cost, infrastructure, reliability. epa released the three rules that will have an adverse effect on the electricity generation across the country. finalizing new electronic generation units was the first rule released and it will prevent nicole plants from being built across the country.
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sequestration, the only technology described in that rule, is proving not to be ready for wide scale technical implementations, costs are escalating to the point that projects are being abandoned. the second and third rules work together. the second is the final version of the cppp, and the third is a back stop or federal plan for states that are unable or choose not to comply with the final cpp. these rules will result in an unprecedented overhaul of the power generation transmission systems by dramatically reducing power generation, and establishing aggressive renewable targets. these rules together circumvent congressional authority by creating large-scale program to revamp the power industry, and replace the long-standing economic model for generation of electricity based on environmental model. u.s. epa made changes in response to the cpp. u.s. epa is evident that it raised the reduction from 30% to
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32% nationwide. in ohio, our mandated reduction target is roughly 11% more aggressive than the proposed rule, meaning ohio will have to lower its rate by 37%. between 2012 and the final plan. final cpp dictates that natural gas generation be deployed at 75% capacity factor, updated cost projections using the final rule haven't been completed but the public utilities commission conducted analysis of the estimate in 70% capacity factor, predicted wholesale energy prices to be 39% higher in 2025, costing ohioians $2.5 billion more than projected. u.s. epa made profound changes to the rule. the number, nature and overall level of wholesale changes call the epa to release the final cpp and allowing interested parties the opportunity to review and provide comment.
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on numerous occasions, the circuit court of appeals, the state of ohio pointed out the shortcomings. this is why governor kasich asked to stay the implementation of the rule. all legal appeals -- until all legal appeals have been resolved. the cpp is not the answer. with unresolved legal challenges, along with substanti substanti substantial changes, they should wait until the issues are resolved. thank you for the opportunity to testify. i'm happy to answer any questions. >> thank you. mr. eisdorfer, you are recognized for five minutes. >> chair brightenstine, chair smith, members of the committee. for more than a year now, three oregon state agencies the department of environmental quality, the department of energy, and the public utility commission along with nearly two dozen stakeholders have been working together to understand epa's draft and now final rule.
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we're working on implementing the clean power plan. in our initial comments to the rule, back in october of last year, the director of oregon's ceq wrote on behalf of state that the clean power plan proposal is a welcome federal response to reversing climate change, and is a good first step in mitigating the effects of greenhouse gas pollution across the country. governor kate brown stated that the epa's clean power plan is in the best interests of oregon on many fronts, a healthy environment is essential to ensuring the health of oregonians and protects quality of life for generations to come. we can say that oregon's in pretty good shape. and there is a reason for this. oregon has been planning for this for more than two decades. the risk of greenhouse gas regulation that we have required the utilities to plan for is now a reality. oregon's utility rate payers have been investing in clean energy to reduce the costs and risks of carbon regulation and those investments are paying off.
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here are a few investment highlights. the utilities in oregon engage in integrated resource planning which is firmly rooted in robust analysis that compels the utility to make decisions that result in least cost, least risk future for its customers. this is included, considering the risk of future costs of greenhouse gas regulation in the utilities' decisions about what resources to invest in. oregon's largest utility is retiring the state's only coal plant in 2020. about 20 years ahead of schedule, based on a least cost, least risk determination by the public utility commission. customers of the two largest utilities have been paying into a dedicated fund for cost effective energy efficiency, and we believe our energy efficiency delivery system is second to none. oregon has renewable portfolio standards that directs the state's largest utilities by 2025.
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this will put oregon, its utilities and customers in a strong position to comply with the clean power plan. it will reduce the cost and risk of compliance with the plan and keep our utility systems strong and robust. despite these long-term investments, or perhaps because of these long-term investments, our economy is strong. since 2000, per capita carbon emissions have been in steady decline in oregon, and the state's gdp is as good as or better than the national average. it exceeded the u.s. rate in 13 of the 16 years between 1998 and 2013. and oregon ranks among the 15th fastest growing state economies in 11 of the 16 years. the clean power plan provides state regulators with a significant degree of flexibility in determining how to comply, and accommodated states similarly situated. we will decide whether to use a rate based system, to their credit epa has revised the plan
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to address the concerns of oregon, and other stakeholders. the epa has improved the thinking about the the reliabilf the clean power plan and the final rule and understands reliability is of paramount importance to utahs, regulators and the customers. the plan is a variety of state compliance approach he allowing oregon to leverage existing state laws and recognizing under particular approach tess historic investment oregon clean energy. however, oregon is not an island and it's not enough for oregon to comply with the clean power plant within its own borders. rate payers are tied to fossil fuel generation and other states. we are more than interested in how other western states comply with the clean power plant. since our electricity rates depend on how those states comply. as oregon looks to implement its own compliance plan, we are interested in exploring the potential for collaboration with neighboring states using market mechanism toes reduce the overall cost of compliance and
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enhance the overall effect in this at reducing greenhouse gas emissions. oregon is proud of our clean energy investment strategy and we are in a good position to comply with the clean power plant. if the very states collaborate and cooperate, a clean power plant offers the united states a path towards finally addressing the real and pressing issue of climate change and cost basis. i appreciate the opportunity to testify before the committee today. thank you. >> thank you for your testimony. questioning is limited to five minutes. we'll go into a round of questioning here and i'll recognize myself for five minutes. can we pull up -- there's a chart that was given to us by the u.s. chamber of commerce. it's a map of the united states. and you can see that the green states -- i'm having a hard time reading that, but i've got it here. so the green states, this is winners and losers from the epa carbon regulations.
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and it says states that will be able to improve co2 are in green or they'll sell credits to others needing to achieve compliance. states in red must reduce co2 emissions or purchase credits from states in order to comply. so this, to me, this rule has been published -- no, it actually hasn't been published. it's been finalized, but it's not been published in the final register as of this point. but when it goes into effect, it's going to establish winners and losers. "r i guess my question for the witnesses, and i'd like to start with you, chairman shaw, is do you perceive this as a transfer of wealth from maybe your state of texas to the green states? >> thank you, chairman. certainly when you look at the fact that the texas rate will have to be reduced by about 33%,
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that is going to come at a cost and certainly one of the major costs that we've seen and part of the reason that we've been able to have economic prosperity and growth in our state has been due to low cost of energy, the likely extreme increase in rates is going to make it much more difficult for our state to continue to provide those jobs and resources that are necessary for that growth. so, yes, it would certainly make it easier or make it an uneven playing field from that perspective if you're not having to make those investments. and we've made investments. you know, $7 billion in building out transmission lines for our 13,000 megawatts of wind energy or significant investments that we've already made. >> director butler, how do you see this for your state? >> thank you for the question. i look at it two ways. there's two ways for a state to comply, particularly ohio. we're either going to need to shut down additional coal assets and buy more expensive power or buy credits from somebody else. both of those will have a significant cost for the state
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of ohio to reach what i indicated in my testimony, which is a 37% reduction in co2 emissions and that's an 11% increase over the draft plan. >> mr. eithor, it looks like your state is going to be able to sell power or sell credits. you guys will be able to gain a lot, from a rule that did not exist until last month. >> two quick points. one, under the proposed rule, oregon actually did not come out very well in this sense. and, yet, the state really welcomed the clean power plan as a good first step toward addressing climate change. so the final rule did turn the tables a little bit. but the second point i would make is that there are a number of customers of utilities in oregon that are tied to as aettes in montana, wyoming, and utah. so in that sense, oregon is tied throughout the west and while
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this map makes it look like oregon is sitting pretty, we have a lot of work to do and a lot of cooperative discussions done on a multi state basis in the last. >> do you disagree that or will be advantaged compared to texas or ohio? >> again, there are two things oregon has to think about. one is complies as a state and in that sense oregon is in very good shape. the second thing is rate impacts on customers in oregon and we have to work with the state in which thermal resources are outside of oregon, but serving oregon. so it's a little bit of a half a loaf. >> dr. shaw, the epa has assumed that renewable energy sources will increase dramatically as a result of this rule. my home state of oklahoma is already a nationwide leader in wind energy. we're fourth in the country in electricity produced from wind accounting for over 15% of electricity generation in oklahoma. do you believe at the pa's
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targets for renewable energy increases the accuracies our renewable increases are realistic given the existing increases in production in states such as yours and mind, oklahoma and texas? >> chairman, my state as well as yours have made phenomenal increases in wind energy and the rate epa is projected. it appears for years 2023 through '30, we will have to increase our renewables winds being part of that at the maximum rate that we've ever done it every year in that time frame. and i think that's far from typical and would be very challenging to me. >> last question, i'm running out of time, will states like oklahoma and texas get any credit for renewable energy sources implemented in their states? will we get credit for that? >> unfortunately because many of those investments happened after the -- excuse me, before 2012 which uses a baseline, we don't
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get credit for those investments. so it is a significant blow from that perspective. >> thank you for your testimony and i'd like to recognize ranking member bonamicci for her questions. >> thank you very much. i only have five minutes and i have a lot of questions, so i'm going to ask three. one about flexibility, one about the grid and one about costs. and i'll ask them all at once to save time. so you give epa credit for revising the clean power plan to address concerns for stakes and stakeholders. you said the clean power plan provides stakeholders with a significant degrees of flexibility when determining how to comply. i want you to talk about that flexibility will work and how that is responsive to concerns that have been raised. secondly, with regard to the grid, you say in your testimony that there are existing tools and frameworks across the country to protect the reliability of the grid. and that's a concern that we've heard raised. can you please discuss how the
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rule was changesed to address reliability concerns and whether those changes are sufficient to alleviate the grid reliability? and finally, one of the main criticisms and we heard this morning is that the clean power plan will cause electric bills to increase. but according to the epa, the average electricity bills will be cut. and by 2030, the average american family will save $7 on their electric bill per month. so how have consumers and communities in oregon benefited from programs like the energy trust, for example, the state's energy efficiency program and specifically what has been the effect on electricity bills? so reliability grid and cost. thank you. >> thank you, representative bonamicci. we could talk for hours on this, but i'll try to be brief. the flexibility comes in number of ways. i'll list a couple. states are allowed to choose whether to go with a mass base or a rate base calculation that
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allows states to really tailor their particular situation. under the proposed rule, oregon was in a position where we couldn't choose between the two and under the final rule, math base became an option. as we talk to state holders, mass base versus base rate is on the table. the states are going to have a wide discretion on how to allocate allowances. states can choose to go it alone or multi lateral agreements or even go into a trading ready kind of platform. and so there really are a thoughtful number of choices. in terms of reliability, there are a significant number of improvements in the plan.
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states seek a revision of their plan for a plant not to -- under certain reliability circumstances and something that we're looking closely at is the memorandum of understanding between the epa and the u.s. department of energy where there's going to be a coordinated process to help the states address reliability concerns, monitor how that state planned development is going to go and provide support during this position transition period. finally, on the electricity bills, what i think oregon has done extremely well in the last 20 years is planning. our integrated resource planning process really causes the utahs to think very long and hard about the least cost, least risk
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approach. oregon especially since 1999 but even back -- dating back to 1980 has treated energy efficiency not as a boutique thing to do every now and then, but as a genuine resource that a utility should rely on. it is a cost-effective resource and should be at the top of the list of any utility acquisition as being the lowest cost resour resource. so between planning, energy efficiency, we've been able to maintain our low cost. we are below average and we've been below average for dwight quite some time. we don't expect the clean power plan to fundamentally change that because of the tools that you would use to meet the clean power provisions.
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>> thank you, mr. chairman. in my direct in southwest arkansas has already been announced to be closed and there's study that's show that rates will increase from 20% to 60% because of this closure. the the obvious negative effects are direct loss. the higher rates will put a disproportional burden to low and fixed income resident necessary my district. not only in their higher light bills and the increased costs of goods. welcome. there's not too many of us out there. if you look at texas, what's the split on residential versus commercial use? >> i don't have that information. i don't know what that -- it's
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largely driven by the commercial. we are a large energy consumer because of the fact that we manage manufacturer goods and process materials that apply much of the united states. >> and in ohio, is that similar there, too? >> yes, sir. ohio is the fifth largest consumer in the u.s. 50% of that is industry. >> the remainder is split between commercial and industrial. >> so if we -- i think we fail to see sometimes how much of the power goes into industry and jobs. so if you look at current air quality standards in texas and the rest of the u.s. and compare those to the world quickly on a scale of 1 to 10, 1 being low quality and 10 being high quality, where would you say china would be on that scale?
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on the south end of that, some of the worst air quality that exists exists in parts of china. >> and indonesia and vietnam. >> they're still not at the levels that we are. >> and the u.s.? >> if we're not a ten, then the scale needs to be accommodating to put us there. >> but we're leading in the world in air quality standards? >> yes, sir. >> okay. so do you believe higher costs plus reliability energy can drive manufacturing industrial jobs to countries with lower standards? >> i think it could. i think even the threat of higher costs can drive those overseas to lower costs areas with less restrictive regulations. >> in my district, what we need very much are jobs and i would hate for investors to come in and see this huge increase in electrical rates and decide to move their manufacturing
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somewhere else and when we look at this, there seems to be confusion in it. i spent quite a bit of time out in your state, a beautiful state except for the large wind farms along the clupby ya george that dot the landscape. how do you feel the about the epa's biomass treatment of energy >> that is something we continue to look at. that is not something we loved and at the same time, we recognized what the epa was trying to -- the message they were trying to send is that not
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all biomass is created equal. so folks at the department of energy -- >> are they saying it's not renewable? >> they're saying the carbon sequestration benefits need to be tracked closely. so that may mean some biomass is treated differently and depending upon if it's sustainablely -- >> it's bad enough when epa is picking winners and losers in power, but then they start taking winners and losers there. i think we should take an all encompassing approach and the lower cost efficient product and develop these other technology wes more research and development in those areas. but it looks like i'm about out of time, mr. chairman, so i'll yield back. >> thank you for your questions.
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ranking member johnson is recognized for five minutes. >> thank you very much. >> mr. shaw, i'm a native texan. i'm a nurse by education. last year, parkland hospital had a billion dollars of uncompensated care. children's hospital had about a third of that. many of the conditions are respiratory related, which are related to environmental contamination. have you factored in the cost that it would take the state to continue to afford this kind of health care cost with most of our people being poor that are living in low income areas, that are damaged more frequently by these heavy environmental violations? >> congresswoman, the clean
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power plan is directed as reducing greenhouse gases which do not impact the pesrytory issues. the cobenefits that are claimed in the rule -- >> wait a minute. repeat what you just said. >> the cobenefits. in other words, the rule is based on reducing -- >> i know what the rule says, but you say it does not impact respiratory? >> that's correct. greenhouse gas emissions don't have any adverse impact on respiratory health. some of the rhetoric from epa suggests the clean power plan is going to, by reducing greenhouse gases leads to improvement in respiratory companies. that's not due to reduction in co2. >> what is it due to? >> it's due to their cobenefits. they're suggesting the process they're mandating will accidently and likely cause reduction in other emissions. the challenge with that, though,
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is they're assuming that it's going to provide health benefits, yet they're assuming that reducing pm 275 even lower leads to health benefits. that is my concern is that it's misleading whenever they told us that you're going to have these health benefits associated with this rule. the areas where tlshgd be a benefit to that's areas that are non-attainment, those are being addressed throughout the rules and we're making strides to comply with those regulations. >> so you're challenging the epa, their goal is health and safety of the people that inhabit that? >> yes, ma'am. the purpose of this rule is to reduce greenhouse gas emissions
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and as part of that the state gold areas, primarily the benefits they claim are a slight decrease in sea level rise, unmeasurable, as well as a hungt of a degree fahrenheit reduction in increase in global temperature. those are unmeasurable and those are not quiet quantifiable from the benefit standpoint. therefore, they went to the accidental cobenefits associated with it, not what the purpose of the rule was, to claim benefits to the rule. >> so you're saying it has absolutely nothing to do, the science that has indicated that is not pure science? i'm suggesting the goal is and what led to this rule is climate change and client variability. and carbon dioxide, which is the focus of the rule, does not have health impacts. carbon dioxide at the levels we
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breathe it is good for plants. we breathe in oxygen and exhale carbon dioxide. you have to get larger levels of carbon dioxide than we're ever going to see in the ambient air. so the goal of the plan is to address climate change, yet that impact -- so climate change has no impact on health? >> the model suggestions of what this rule would accomplish would be an unmeasurable change in sea lev level. so even the best estimate of what the climate change impact and benefit of this rule is so small to be unquantifible. >> so when we continue to see climate change with a lot of flooding, a lot of air contamination, this is not going to impact health? >> for one, the ipcc, the intergovernment panel on climate change has indicated the adverse weather we're seeing has not
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been correlated with climate change. so there is certainly an argument to be made and additional dae et to be there. could you submit to me your research findings and the origin of them? >> sure. i will be happy to provide you the background information on that. >> thank you very much. >> thank you, congresswoman. >> and the chair now recognizes the chairman of the full committee, mr. smith, for five minutes. >> thank you, mr. chairman. from what i read, the reason for those costs are the children of illegal immigrants in the country today. it is not due to health care
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issues caused by carbon emissions. dr. shaw, let me address my first question to you. the chairman put a chart on the screen that was produced by the chamber of commerce that showed that 42 states are going to be harmed by this clean power plan and by harmed, i mean they're going to see a cart matdic increase in electricity costs. these costs are going to hurt low income individuals, because it's going to raise the costs of everything, whether it be food, electricity or anything else. so i very much regrekt the impact on low income americans that this plan is going to have. but i wanted to ask you, do you see any bit of this whatsoever as a result of reducing the plan emissions? >> chairman, no. the rule does not -- especially from the standpoint of its
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impact in recent carbon dioxide does not have a measurable xwabl on sea level or the global you the. to your point, texas having a competitive energy on the market, that is you only get to generate and sell electricity if you do it cheaply has naturally driven our electricity generation grid to be as cheap as possible. do you think that this clean
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power plan is going to have any significant impact on climate change? >> chairman smith, absolutely. we can talk about the incremental benefits of this particular plan. >> do you disagree with the epa's data that shows it would only impact the rise, at best impact the rise in ocean level by .001 of an inch? >> i can't say whether i agree with it or disagree with that. i haven't done that analysis. if we don't begin to address it -- >> this particular cost is on epa emission s emissions when t administrator was before the full committee a couple of months ago, i made the point that i just made to you about no significant impact on climate change. she did not deny that.
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she said only it could be justified because we need to show action. she does not dispute the data that showed it would impact the rise in sea levels by .01, the thickness of three pieces of paper and we're summiting the american people to burdensome regulations across jobs, it is going to increase electricity crieses and not because it's going to have any impact on climate change. that is what the administrator herself said. i think because certain plans are going to be shut down entirely. if those coplans are generating less carbon emissions, that is going to have a measurable effect on the environment and is
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beginning to address climate change. >> when you say measurable effect, do you have any evidence whatsoever that it's going to impact the sea level rise by more than .01? >> i don't have that information. >> thank you. last question one mentioned that you were disappointed that the clean power plan was going to have a half an impact on the state of oregon. what were you disappointed about or what's the half loaf that did not meet your expectations? >> chairman smith, i think i was arguing against the visual that was produced that seems to indicate that oregon is in really, really good shape. we were in g shape for complying as a state, but as rate payers, since we are tied to coal plants and gas facilities in other states, we do care very much what happens in those other states. >> and i saw one document that
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said electricity rates will go up in oregon. is that possibly? >> that is a possibility. >> i now recognize mr. edwards for five minutes. >> thank you very much, mr. chairman. and thank you to the witnesses today. i wanted to highlight that we've been hearing a lot of the steps that are necessary to address climate change by reducing carbon emissions and its equivalent is setting up the economy on fire. but it's actually not the case. and i would note that maryland on that chamber of commerce chart is deceptive. so it makes me question those other red states on there. but the efforts of maryland and other states that have been involved in the greenhouse gas initiative are proved that the environmental protection and economic and robust development can and should go hand in hand. i have a regional review of the analysis group that i want to
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submit for the record. the report finds over the last three years, the regional greenhouse gas initiative is produced the economic value of $1..3 billion and $14,200 jobs. this is on top of the $1..6 billion in net economic value and 16,000 jobs created over the fist three years that were analyzed under the program. energy bills in my state and the other participating states in this regional initiative declined between 2012 and 2014 with consumers saving $460 million. the regional economy has grown 8%. in fact, maryland has been very supportive of the rule that we're discussing today and began under the regional initiate ifr, go2 emissions reductions under reggie that have reaped over $2
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million for credits. the solar panels for helping low income people with utility bills and for rebates for energy efficient appliances. so i am gratify that the epa has proous introduced this rule and is preparing to finalize it because i think it's going to be a great economic impact for this state and for our future. maryland relies on economic from the chesapeake bay and the other states in the region so we can't afford even a little bit of an increase in sea level because it would impact our economy tremendously. so i'm gratified for the epa's work. let me say, as well, the u.s.
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globe change, human health, climate change threatens human health in many ways. climate change is increasing the risk of respiratory stress from poor air quality, heat stress, insect boor, water born and airborne diseases. extreme weather events often lead to fatalities and a variety of health impacts on vulnerable populations. large scale changes in the environment due to climate change in extreme weather events are increasing the risk of emergence or reemergence of health threats currently uncommon in the united states such as denghi fever. key drivers of health impacts include frequently intense and longer lasting extreme heat. increasingly frequent extreme
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precipitation, intense storms and precipitation can lead to flood, drought and ecosystem changes. causing injuries and death, stress veexzs and water quality impacts among other effects on public health. so i would welcome any submission for the record that would refuse the findings of the climb change impact in the united states and those highlights as published in may of 20147.. and lastly, just as we closed out for a witness from oregon, and thank you for the work that you are doing, i wonder if you can talk about any regional efforts that you're involved in and whether you think that you might change some of your work in the region over these next several weeks and years and months. >> thank you, congresswoman. two quick things. one, the northwest has acted as a region for many, many years.
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so washington, oregon, montana and idaho are usually in a can't state of discussion. so this is no exception. we're having those kinds of discussions. another regional discussion that we're having is service sayretory. it's six states that include washington, oregon, welcome and utah. and they -- their resource lead is heavy on coal and so that utilities significantly impacted by the rule and so discussions between those states are in the offing. >> thank you. mr. abraham from louisiana. >> thank you, mr. chairman. this, in my opinion, is the epa
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doing a little malpractice of manipulating data to fit their goal instead of using this data object ifrly to actually formulate a coherent plan. i'll make a brief mention to ranking member johnson and miss edwards as far as some documentation as far as whether this comet change, which i'll assume is global warming the way they are saying it. i am a practicing physician that does treat respiratory conditions and certainly asthma and administrator mccarthy has often tried to refer to as children's asthma as something that she uses to try to sell her points. but if you look at the objective data from an unbias source, which i have to, and that's the cdc. if you look at states like california who have some of the cleanest air in the nation, they still have the highest asthma rate. and they have increasing asthma
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rates. so if we want to compare apples to apples, you are right, chairman shaw, and that co2 certainly has no role in respiratory asthma as far as exacerbating it. so saying that, you know, we do have object onnive data that proves your point to the thing. i'll refer, also, to this report that has been touted and i will ask if it has not been done to insert it into the record. mr. eisendorf, from this report b it says that oregon stands to make or benefit from up to $125 million. would you agree with that? >> i'm sorry, i just don't have the ability to -- >> okay. i'm assuming it's a good report. i will, again, ask to submit it to the record and i'll stay with you, sir. the way i understand it, oregon
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has only one coal fired plant? >> yes. that -- >> and it's supposed to go down or shut down in 2020? >> yes. the boardman plant, its use for life was to go after the year 2040 and there was a discussion that began about 2006, 2007 by stakeholders, utilities and regulators and the least cause least risk analysis was done and the result of that was it was in the customers' interest, it was less costly to shut the plant down early rather than to retrofit it with nonclean power plant environment yal technologies. so it was actually cheaper to shut it down and less riskier to shut it down in 2020 to full 2040. >> under the power plan. will oregon be allowed to emit more carbon or less carbon? the the way i read it, it's more, actually. what's your take on that?
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>> from the baseline from 2012, oregon is not going to be able to emit more carbon from that baseline. >> okay. and i will probably respectfully disagree reading the report, but i will defer to sources for that. chairman shaw, would you agree that with this bser methodology, that this is an overreach of the federal government? >> clearly, this is exceptional from what the -- what i think the clear reasoning of the 111d statute prescribed. >> and that's all i have, mr. chairman. i yield back. >> the gentleman yields back. i now recognize mr. foster from illinois. >> thank you, mr. chairman. director, as i understand, one of your fundamental objections is what is proposed is to replace an economic model for determining the energy, it's one
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that includes environmental factors. first, just a simple question, how many people die in ohio each year as a result of power plant emissions? >> representative foster, thanks for the question. i don't know the exact number to your question, but my -- >> roughly. >> i don't know. i'm not a physician. >> thank you. okay. it's sort of surprising because that seems like a fundamental question here. let's see. i actually do have an estimate, if we could have the thing out there. this is an estimate from someone by the clean air task force put this together. i think it's primarily driven by particulate emissions. and it looks like, do an eyeball average, about 10 people in 10,000 -- 10 in 100,000, about 1 in 10,000 die each year in ohio roughly in a typical area of ohio if this data is correct. ohio, i think, has something like 10 million people. so we're talking thousandish, roughly 1,000 people per year die because of particulates from
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coal plants. so from a particularly economic point of view that you advocate, what is the optimum number of people to die in ohio each year? >> representative foster, ohio has about 11.5 million people. and ultimately, i think the chart that you're showing and the argument that you're making is around something that dr. shaw talked about, this issue about these cobenefits of the clean power plan. you're talking about this -- this is about issues around particulate emissions. has nothing to do with co2 emissions. >> but this hearing is about closing plants. so the cobenefits -- i do not understand the the argument that when you complain about the cost of something, you don't include the economic cobenefits. but that's a separate issue. so -- but i was wondering, just in general, you know, for whatever philosophical approach to this you take, how would you calculate the economically optimum number of people the die in ohio each year?
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what are the inputs into that? >> sure. representative foster, we care about all 11.5 million in ohio. and this hearing today is about the clean power plan. it is about the the co2 emissions that are supposed to be reduced from the clean power plan. we take seriously and as you have seen in my remarks that ohio has reduced not only its co2 emissions and -- >> how do you do the opt mvt mum plan, in your point of view? do you believe that the optimum number of people to die from particulates in ohio is zero or some number bigger than zero? and how from your philosophical point of view do you calculate the number of people to die each year? >> so we benefited from an all futures approach in the state of ohio. we've got energy efficiency, natural gas, wind, we've got solar. we think that it is in our best economic and environmental interest to have all of those in ohio. and we'll strive to continue to
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do that. >> but ultimately, you have a philosophy that tells you how to optimize that mix. maybe purely economic or a combination of purely economic and environmental aspects that allows you to calculate the number of people who should die in ohio each year. how do you -- how would you advocate determining that number. for example, does it include health effects from downwind states? if the emissions from ohio raise co2, we lose the sheath and 75 years from now people die in coastal areas. should that be included or not? how large is your commons that you're looking at here? >> arrest foster, so the way that we look at this in ohio is that, again, it's an all fuels approach. whether or not you want to -- what we don't account for is the notion that we'll see any impact
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to human health because of emissions that are regulated under the clean power plan. we take into development of our plan not just clean power, but how we look at our energy mix based on an economic model. it is also based on looking at environmental protection as included in my role as director as being protective of human health and the environment. so it's always a balance on how we try to balance with perspective. we work closely with the public utilities commission ksh. >> what i'm fishing for is what is the balance of, you know, human suffering and death versus economic goals? because it seems like there's a big disconnect and we're talking past each other on this. one side of this hearing, people seem to be, you know, ignoring anything with regard to quality of life of ultimately death and versus pure economic concerns. i'm wondering how you handle that and what is the objective
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function you're looking for from a mathematical point of view? does it take into account the number of deaths in ohio or not? >> representative win did say i think you're line of questioning is unfair from the perspective of what this haeshg is about. it's about the clean power plan, looking at co2 emissions relative to the clean power plan. >> the title of the hear is the shut down power plants. we're talking about shutting down certain kinds of plants. >> the gentleman's time s has expired. >> real quick, could you answer the question, is there already a national ambient air quality standard for particulate matter? that already exists. aim incorrect? >> mr. chairman, that's correct. >> okay. i now recognize representative muvinar from michigan. >> thank you, mr. chairman. i wanted to follow up on some of the questions regarding the clean power plan rule and the safety valve provision. according to the epa, this would give states a 90-day period to
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exceed carbon limits during emergencies. ep heir has indicated that although this safety valve exists, it would be rarely used. mr. shaw and mr. butler, i wonder if you could address the safety valve provision and give us your thoughts on that. >> thank you. well, i certainly am appreciative that there's a recognition that this rule could lead to reliability issues. some of the challenges and concerns with the safety value approach is that in order to have allowing generating to operate beyond what is permitted and allowed in those extreme circumstances, there's two issues. one, epa has not made it clear what those extreme circumstances are. so it's going to be rare. would you be able to rely on it? two, one of the outcomes of this rule as i see it is the extreme advancement in renewables energy is going to make it more challenging for us to account for when peak wind aren't blowing. part of what that is going to
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mean is we may not have generation available in our market to turn on because it's difficult to justify cost of building new generation capacity when you may only be able to operate for a few hours a year and only during those extreme circumstances and those rates are going to have to be extremely high twoornt those multi millions and sometimes billion dollar investments. >> representative, i think my comments would be very much similar to dr. shaw in the sense that the way that we look at this reliability safety valve on the one hand where we are appreciative because i think it was one of the probably most mentioned concerns that states had raised with epa as well as our public utilities commission around the notion that they were going to be setting up through the clean power plan constrained zones and putting in position where we would have unreliable power supplies at certain times. so what i would tell su i think we're going to have to go on what i heard was the public
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utilities commission and usepa signed a memorandum of understanding, i think they are trying to figure out the dynamics of that as we are, as well. so we appreciate that there is this reliability safety valve. i think it's unknown at this point whether we think it will be effective. i've heard them talk about the reliability safety valve from the perspective they have a memorandum of understanding, it really is in the details which are yet to be developed. >> okay. thank you. i also want to get back to this question of getting credit for and maybe have all three of you address this issue for energy efficiency changes or reduction in greenhouse gases, different plans that you implemented in your state prior to 2012 that you don't get credit for. could you talk about that aspect? because that's a concern i've
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heard from constituents, as well. >> i'll quickly talk about the case for texas. with regard to, for example, renewable energy, we've had a significant increase where about 10% of our electric generation is from wind power that was accomplished through about a $7 billion investment in transition line toes make that occur and a dedicated effort and that peak right because of 2012 in the mix of things, it was -- credits were going to be expiring and so you had this equip where lots of wind power was installed, a lot of the expenditure was made but then we don't get credit because the baseline was drawn after that occurred. >> representative, i'll echo that. one of our chief concerns and comments we made in our draft comments on the power plan which was yet unaddressed and yet to be addressed still is this notion of first movers like the state of ohio, like the state of texas where we've had a renewable portion since 2008, had targets for renewables, had
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targets for solar and energy efficiency hitting targets by the year 2025. on to on to be told frankly because we were first movers and we were aggressive in implementing those across the state, to be told that those efforts between 2005 and '12 don't count is frankly disappointing to us and puts us in a deep hole. number two, recent conversations with u.s. epa and our modeling looking at the finalized clean power plan is that many of our renewable portfolio standards going forward even after 2012 will not count because they don't qualify under the measurement and verification requirements that u.s. epa has put into the final rule. >> congressman, very quickly, one of the things i said earlier is that oregon was beginning to look at the mass based approach. and under that approach, any energy efficiency with a measure life that extends past after
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2022 and into the compliance period in a sense very much does count to the extent that it causes the utilities to have to operate their thermal generation that much less. so under a mass based approach, mass based and rate based creates energy efficiency differently. under a mass based, all energy efficiency you do, the compliance period, that's a really good thing. >> the gentleman yields back. the the gentleman from ohio, mr. johnson, is recognized. >> thank you, mr. chairman. and glad i was able to make it back the director butler, earlier this year in testimony before the energy and commerce committee, as i recall, you stated that epa's clean power plan had not been well designed. and that the rule was rushed out the door to meet a predetermined schedule. so question for you, now that epa has released the final clean
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power plan rule, do you still feel that the final rule has some of the same flaws that existed in the proposed rule? >> representative, thanks for the question. i think that they obviously made some adjustments in the final rule. where he still have many of those questions remain and there are certain new ones, too. the actual final clean power plan is dramatically different. the titles of the books haven't changed, but all the panls are different. that is one of the reasons why today i called for epa at a minimum rerelease of the draft so that we ought to be able to -- rather than having to implement the rule immediately, at the same time, we're reviewing it, give us and all the stakeholders an opportunity to review it. i will also just mention that
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the idea that u.s. epa made some assurances that as soon as august 3rd when they released this rule, that beginning in the first week of september, they intended this rule to be issued at final. they have deferred and moven away from that position. that would take us into february. all the while, still requiring states to be able to submit a plan by september 2016. those dates are unrealistic for us to meet. i think ultimately there are even more questions that have been raised in the final plan that we're still unclear about and frankly u.s. epa has not been able to answer those questions for us. >> you've answered several of my additional questions. let me turn to another issue
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that we've talked about before in some of the hearings and testimonies. for chairman shaw and director butler, it appears that one of the changes between the final and the proposed clean power plan rule is the the amount of coal fired power plant requirements reflected in the base case, the scenario that analyses the current state of affairses without the clean power plan. it appears that the epa believes that 27%, or 78 giga watts of coal-fired electricity in existence three months ago will close by next year, even without the implementation of the clean power plan. epa claims that it made this change based on stakeholder comments on the rule.
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did your agencies submit comments? >> yes. >> for you both, chairman slaw and director butler, in your comments on the proposed clean power plan, did you provide comments regarding the number of coal-fired requirements that would occur as a result of the mercury air toxics rule? >> my agency does not. our public utilities commission, perhaps, may have. >> representative johnson, he we did and we still, as i testified today, just by the mercury, the match rules that were responsible for closing 25% of our megawatts in ohio. so just over 6,000 megawatts of power turned off this year because of the mercury standard. >> final question for the two of
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you. in your opinions, what stakeholder groups would have submitted comments that would have led the epa to make changes to its base-cased scenario for the amount of its coal fired requirements. and do you believe that these comments were submitted in an attempt too make it ach as though the clean power plan was less onerous to the states? >> i don't know what the the -- what group submitted comments that they were able to base that on. certainly, it does seem especially with the overly aggressive renewable energy goals that they have that one could conclude that it appears that they were more concerned with getting a 30% reduction than in determining what bser was for the different facilities. >> representative, i concur with that. i still believe there was a conclusion before the plan ultimately were developed. >> got it. okay. well, we've heard this before, mr. chairman. you know, you've got to pass it before you know what's in it. you've got to define it before you do the analysis. i mean, that's just a pattern of
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this administration in so many areas and this is another one of them. i yield back. >> the gentleman yields back. without objection, i have a letter here from the governor of ohio, john kasich. it's a request to suspends implementation of the clean power plan. without objection, i'd like to have this letter entered into the record. i now recognize the gentleman from alabama, mr. palmer, for five minutes. >> thank you, mr. chairman. it was with great interest that i followed your testimony a few minutes ago, several minutes ago, chairman shaw, that this is really not about air quality. it's about climate change. which i think raises some questions as to whether or not this should fall under the purview of the epa, since their primary responsibility under the clean air act was air quality. that said, one of the things
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that concerns me about this along that same line is your excellent analysis of the snvkest to the contrary of what this will do for climate change, the very limited impact. the one thing that you didn't cover that i'd like four to comment on is that there's -- recently, a report from a former lead author of the international panel on climate change, dr. phillip lloyd from south africa, he says that the majority of climate change we're seeing is due to natural variations. if you mean with that? >> i may have. i didn't recognize it from the author's name been but i have read material similar to that. >> i think this guy, obviously, has a -- an excellent reputation in the scientific community given that he was the lead author of the ippc, one of their
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lead authors of the ippc report. so ijs it's sensible, then, to suggest that the epa is imposing an enormous economic burden on the families of america for little or no impact. >> and, congressman, i think as you even look into the material -- not the summaries, but look into the material of even previous ippc reports, you go back a few years and the message wasn't that climate change, manmade climate change is causing all these issues. it's that we've seen a natural clielt change and the concern was manmade emissions might accelerate that to lead to events. and then there was a shift it seems to me that seemed to suggest whether variability and any unusual weather became accredited to climate change and i think it seems to support what the morrow bust review of the
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scientific record is. >> that came after they realized that we haven't had any temperature increase in 18 years and there was no evidence to support that. so they just changed the dialogue from global warming to climate change. mr. eisendorf, in regard to this impact that this is going to have and your assertion that there's some association with health benefitses and particularly asthma, there's a study out of ucla. there are several studies that indicate that the single biggest predictor of asthma is income. it's not air quality. it's income. how do you respond to that? >> representative palmer, not really my area of expertise. it may be that low income folks tend to be downwind from -- >> no, sir. >> i'm not really sure what the answer is. >> no, sir.
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it's -- the proximity to traffic and things like that may have some impact, but the study indicates that the majority of this is low income families. and i want to continue on that line and point out that the national black chamber of commerce is opposed to the clean power plan. and they pointed out that if this goes into effect, poverty rates among black families will go up 23% and among hispanic families will go up 26%. and the states that have already implemented a renewable power plant, such as maryland who began this initiative in 2005, their power rates have gone up, electricity power rates have gone up 61%. so you're imposing an enormous burden on families through this rule that i don't think the epa has taken into full consideration. one other things about this,
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too, is how it impacts senior households, how folks who were on basically low income households, they're below 34,000 in median income and there's a report that came out that indicated that you've got house holes, 41 peshs of seniors went without medical or dental care because they had to make a choice between that and paying their energy bill. 31% went without food for a day. 30% did not fill out a prescription or took less than a full dose. this is the real impact of the regulations that the epa is imposing. this is not some pie in the sky stuff. this is how it impacts real people. it costs jobs. the black national chamber of commerce is estimating that they'll lose literally hundreds of thousands of jobs among black workers and hundreds of thousands of jobs among sxan i
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hispanic workers. that's the real impact. it's not some issue of we may stop this unproven idea on of climate change -- >> the the gentleman's time has expired. >> that you can, mr. chairman. >> i'd like to recognize ranking member b on onamicci to make a submission for the record. >> i would like to submit to the admin vacation a letter. connecticut, oregon, vermont, washington, the district of columnby gentleman and the cooperation council of the city of new york dated august 13th, 2015, in which this group of attorneys general and corporation counsel wrote that the power plant rules issued today are the product of an unprecedented attempt by the epa to solicit public input. they write in strong support of the final rules stating that the rules are firmly grounded in
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law. and i would like to submit this for the record, mr. chairman. >> without objection, so order onned. of course the states that are going to benefit from the clean power plant financially would be the ones who sign that letter. i would like to recognize dr. babbin from the grait great state of texas. >> thank you, mr. chairman. i appreciate that you said great. i have a lot of concerns with the epa's final rule for the clean power plan. while it's an improvement over the proposed rule, it goes too far with unrealistic expectations for reducing carbon emissions and lacks clarity in other areas. for example, i have a new biomass plant in my district that uses forest waste for fuel. under the clean power plan, it's not clear if this plant would be treated as a renewable fault for purposes of initial counseling been has epa provided you, dr. shaw, with any more guidance on
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how these facilities will be handled under the clean power plan? >> that is wurchb of those areas that still remains elusive to get an answer to. >> thank you. >> there's a lot of folks that are worried about that in my district. and also, dr. shaw, i have several coal fired plans in my district. surprisingly, to many texans, 65% of our energy is producing coal fired plans no matter how cheap natural gas is. do you believe that this new rule will kick start a transition away from coal towards renewable energy in texas causing a number of coal fired power units to retire? >> it seems that there's no other outcome and in order to meet the rule would require dictate and crawling back to a point they're no longer feasibly economical to maintain. >> so war on coal is kind of a good name. if so, how will this affect the
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economy and jobs in my district? won't this race prizes and affect reliability of our energy? congressman, i think based on the fact ercot and i think in your region ercot, let to, for example, our electric utility rates were about 30% to 35% lower than the reggie states utility rates, that's been because weaver insentivized the capacity. anything that makes us department from that are those utilizing those energy rates. >> and directed at you again, dr. shaw, and director butler, when administrator mccarthy was here and testified before the sfls committee back in july, she stated unequivocally that the epa's regulatory agenda rely owes on science that is accessible and transparent. do you agree that with regard to the clean power plan, the epa
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has promulgated this rule transparently and that all aspects of the rule, including the calculation of benefits rely upon science and data that have been publicly made available? >> i think that is a stretch and certainly we're still digging our way through the 1500 pages. so maybe we've missed it in there somewhere, congressman. but it is a challenge to understand the basis and i think part of that is because it's very difficult to quantify some of the benefits because it's difficult to quantify the benefit of a hundredth of an inch in sea level rise change. >> mr. butler. i would agree with brian, my colleague. relative to transparency, maybe i'll transition and mention one other issue relative to transparency. t the u.s. epa, i know the state of ohio, west virginia and kentucky, we asked the administrator who hold one of those public hearings somewhere
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within one of our three states so that they could see and get firsthand information from those, the most dramatically affected by the clean power plant. the closest i got was pittsburgh for having one of those public hearings. >> okay. >> and frankly, the level of transparent interaction, i think it was more of just a traditional top down regulatory approach they developed this clean power plan under this clean model, handed it to the states. we got an opportunity to provide some comments. but ultimately, i think they're still continuing down along the strategy that they had all along. >> absolutely. thank you. i think we could see a little more transparency myself. i want to thank all the witnesses. and mr. chairman, i it seems if you give them an inch, the epa will take a mile. this plan is another overreach by this administration and i hope not just sake of my home state of texas, but for the entire country, we as a congress will be able to do something
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about this proposed final rule. thank you and i yield back the balance of my time. >> i'd like to thank the doctor from texas. now recognize the gentleman from texas mr. weber for five minutes. >> chairman shaw, i didn't get to hear your testimony. apparently i was out too late last night. but you mentioned in your testimony that the epa seems to be choosing energy sources that they prefer. and it was said in mr. west's comments earlier that it seems like they're in the business of picking winners and losers. and i appreciate your comments when i was here about this adversely affecting low income people especially in texas since we have our own grid, as you know, 85%, ercot. so what you're saying is that this is actually going to adversely affect low income people more so than others.
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>> yes, congressman. i don't see a way that -- when you see a methodology, determining what your source is going to be based on the economics, which is what our system is based on, it's a creating new generations sources that meet that. and dispatch based on greenhouse emissions alone that raises the costs and the rates of that electric generation. >> i followed your exchange. i think my colleague from maryland and also from the north part of texas, colleague from maryland seemed to list just a whole bunch of bad things that were going to happen, all kinds of illnesses, fires and bad weather. she got down and i think she said heat, heat stress, which low income people when actually their electricity bill goes up would be more prone to turn off their air-conditioner and
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probably a seed to heat stress. she had a long list of bad things that apparently the epa is trying to prevent. the only thing she left out was mumps and measles. and so i was appreciating your comments to the colleague from texas. actually, this is about co2 and that doesn't cause -- i mean, co2 doesn't cause asthma. you also said something, i think, chairman smith might have said .01 of a degree fahrenheit, an unmeasurable rate. is that what he said? >> i said that, as well. the chairman may have mentioned that, as well. that's from epa's -- >> and .01 of an inch sea level rise. let's go over to you. you seem to be in favor of the plan. i was fascinated by chairman smith's comments that that's three pieces of paper. three pieces of paper. so if we're going to disadvantage some low income people, the epa cost estimate,
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this was $9 billion. if you divide that out by 50 states, it's $180 million per state, just fyi. the $180 million per state. if we're going to disadvantage the low income people and cause electricity prices to rise, how many sheets of paper would you add to that pile to disfranchise what percentage of the elderly and the low income?

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