Murkowski's EPA End Run Fails

| Thu Sep. 24, 2009 2:00 PM EDT

Sen. Lisa Murkowski's attempt to block EPA regulation of greenhouse gases is DOA.

Although Murkowski (R-Alaska) will be introducing her amendment to the Interior and Environment Appropriations bill on the floor of the Senate later today, Joe Romm reports that her attempt to undermine the Clean Air Act will not come to a vote. As Kate Sheppard pointed out yesterday, the legally questionable provision would have been another setback during what the UN is optimistically referring to as "climate week."

The provision was condemned not only by more than 30 environmental groups but also raised the ire of centrist legislators such as Sen. Mark Warner (D-Va.). Yesterday at the Council on Competitiveness, Warner criticized the amendment for "simply putting off an inevitable decision." He specifically rebuked the supposed economic concerns Murkowski cited in proposing the amendment and suggested that it "not only sacrifices American leadership but—equally important—it sacrifices our ability to get on board with...what I believe would be the greatest wealth-creation sector and job-creation sector in the next quarter century."

The possibility of EPA greenhouse gas regulation has survived another day, but getting a comprehensive climate bill through the Senate before Copenhagen still looks difficult, if not impossible.

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