Attorney General Ken Paxton has asked the Environmental Protection Agency to halt its Carbon Rule from taking effect, allowing the courts more time to consider legal challenges to the rule.
In his Aug. 20 letter, Paxton argues a stay is necessary to maintain the status quo pending the outcome of judicial proceedings.
On Aug. 3 President Obama and EPA announced the Clean Power Plan – a step they contend will reduce carbon pollution from power plants to combat climate change.
“The Obama Administration and EPA are attempting to take over America’s electrical grid through regulation and without legal authority and Texas plans to vigorously challenge EPA’s ‘power grab,’” said Paxton.
“Affordable, reliable electricity is the foundation of the nation’s economic prosperity, but it also means comfort and security for all American families – Texas will defend its families and jobs from an overreaching federal government. Moreover, Texas has proven that you don’t have to destroy industry and jobs in order to protect the environment.”
According to a press release, from 2000 to 2010, Texas reduced its emissions by almost twice as much as states such as California. And despite the past 15 years of rapid population and economic growth, nitrogen oxide and ozone levels are down and Texans are breathing cleaner air.
Paxton has been a vocal opponent of the rule since it was initially announced earlier this year, believing the sweeping expansion of the EPA’s regulatory power would inflict immeasurable harm on Texas families, with little to no benefit to the environment.
The letter outlines four factors that support the necessity of a stay on the rule:
- The suing states are likely to succeed on the merits;
- Absent a stay, the states will suffer irreparable harm;
- No harm would result from a stay; and
- Public interest strongly favors a stay.
Should the EPA deny Texas’ request for a stay, Attorney General Paxton intends to file suit in the U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit, according to the press release.