FRANKFORT — The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency should stop regulating greenhouse gas emissions, according to a resolution passed unanimously Wednesday by the state Senate Natural Resources and Energy Committee.
Senate Resolution 116 urges Congress to prohibit the EPA from "regulatory activity as to air quality and greenhouse gases" because the EPA is "driving jobs and industry out of America."
"The primary goal of government at the present time must be to promote economic recovery and to foster a stable and predictable business environment that will lead to the creation of jobs," according to the resolution. "Environmental improvement is only possible in a society that generates wealth."
The U.S. Supreme Court ruled in 2007 that greenhouse gases — which contribute to climate change — are pollutants, and the EPA therefore has a duty to regulate them.
The Senate resolution, which carries no legal weight, proceeds to the full Senate. It's sponsored by the committee chairman, Brandon Smith, R-Hazard.
It's one of several measures this legislative session, sponsored by Smith and others, criticizing the EPA for enforcing environmental laws in ways that are drawing protests from the coal industry. Burning coal produces carbon dioxide, a greenhouse gas.
"This is another EPA bill. You think by now I'd have had enough of it, but I'm not a quitter," Smith told the committee Thursday. Later, he added: "You're seeing a lot of shots across the bow."