Whom will President-elect Donald Trump nominate to head the Environmental Protection Agency? Many state officials and U.S. business managers have speculated about that, what with the damage done over the last eight years by outgoing President Barack Obama's agency minions.
But the identity of new EPA directors may not matter much longer if the agency's authority is reduced to what was originally intended – or, better yet, transferred to a consortium of state environmental agencies, as proposed in the Heartland Institute’s Action Plan for President Trump.
With the plug pulled on its powers, legitimate and usurped, the EPA would no longer be able to pretend that it can legislate, nor could it continue whimsically reinterpreting existing rules or slipping fanciful new requirements and prohibitions into them.
Heartland fellow H. Sterling Burnett says the action plan should reduce the number of lawsuits that state attorney generals like Ken Paxton (and Greg Abbott before him) have had to file to rein in this rogue agency.
“The lawsuits largely wouldn’t be needed,” Burnett predicts “The number and severity of the lawsuits will be reduced.”
In addition to transferring EPA powers to a state consortium, the action plan recommends withdrawing from the Framework Convention on Climate Change and the Paris Accord, ending funding for UN climate change programs, rolling back numerous other onerous environmental rules and regulations, and approving the Keystone XL Pipeline.
“Over five years the regulatory responsibility of the EPA would be removed from it,” Burnett explains. “It would be an information-only agency.”
The positive effects of the plan are not limited to the removal of negative factors. As the plan's proponents assert, “Adopting a pro-environment, pro-energy, pro-jobs agenda would produce millions of jobs and billions of dollars in income while more effectively protecting the natural environment than is currently being accomplished by a massive federal bureaucracy and intrusive regulations.”
If the next EPA director implements this plan, we won't have to worry who his successors are.