The Environmental Protection Agency, along with the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment, are set on a destructive path in their quest for clean power. Determined to blaze a legacy trail for President Obama, EPA and CDPHE don’t care who gets harmed in the process of implementing the Clean Power Plan. Quite apart from the questionable legality of the rule, let’s consider the social and economic damage this plan will wreak on Colorado’s communities.
Implementation of the CPP is estimated to cost $300 billion by the National Economic Research Associates. Who will pay for this? You and me. Anyone who relies on electricity to heat their home, power a grain elevator, keep the lights on in the school gym or run the coffee-makers in the local café.
Electricity is a key component of our economic lifeblood; EnergyBiz Magazine said it best in their Winter 2016 issue, “The CPP will usher in an era of escalating electric bills and stifled economic growth that will harm the people least able to afford sharp increases in utility bills: the farmers, small business owners and families served by the country’s more than 900 electric cooperatives. Hardest hit will be families living on fixed incomes or in poverty.”
Economic hardship doesn’t just mean fewer dollars in your wallet. High energy costs result in sacrifices in other areas.
A survey by the National Energy Assistance Directors Association found that in response to higher energy bills, lower-income households went without food for at least one day (24 percent), went without critical medical care (37 percent), were unable to fill a prescription (34 percent), and had someone become ill in their home because it was too cold (19 percent). This is unacceptable.
Going without food or medical care in order to pay increases in energy costs is preventable, but only if we stand up to this unconstitutional rule, and CDPHE’s insistence on formulating a compliance plan for a rule that in its current form, may never be implemented.
In early February, the U.S. Supreme Court issued a stay on the implementation of the Clean Power Plan. While the constitutionality of the plan is under review by the D.C. Circuit Court, CDPHE is persisting in their efforts to craft a compliance plan. Until litigation is finished, CDPHE must desist in their CPP compliance efforts until the stay is lifted, the rule is finalized, and a clear goal for compliance plans is in hand.
The preservation of public health, peace and economic welfare depends on it.
Jerry Sonnenberg, from Sterling, is a state senator representing Colorado Senate District 1, which includes Morgan County.
Reposted by Reagangirl.com 3/21/16