As litigation continues after the final version of the Environmental Protection Agency’s Clean Power Plan was recently unveiled, Democratic gubernatorial candidate and Attorney General Jack Conway tells the Kentucky Chamber he will not develop a state implementation plan until the courts decide and a stay of the deadline is a possible course of action.
When discussing the rule and the litigation surrounding it, Conway noted he is the only Democratic attorney general in the country to challenge the rule and said he will continue to fight it in the courts.
“The EPA is re-regulating in areas they have already regulated and they can’t do that under the Clean Air Act and they are violating their own statute,” Conway said.
Conway said that Kentucky’s low-energy costs is a big reason for the success of many of the state’s industries and that that resource should be defended.
“This is an example of me taking on my own party, putting Kentucky first. I will always put the people of Kentucky first,” Conway said. “And when you say are we going to have to comply, I don’t know. I am not going to develop a state implementation plan while we have a lawsuit pending, I can tell you that. And it is always an option not to submit a plan.”
Recently, the U.S. Supreme Court overturned the Environmental Protection Agency’s landmark air quality rule stating the EPA did not properly consider the costs of the regulation and that the agency should have taken cost of utilities and others in the power industry into account before even deciding whether to set limits for the toxic air pollutants it regulated in the 2011 Clean Air Act.
However, for many utility companies across the country, much of the damage had already been done before the rule was overturned as the industry set out to comply and many argue the ratepayers are still on the hook for costly upgrades made to comply with the rule before the court decision was made.
When asked if lawsuits over the Clean Power Plan would be done before a state implementation plan is due, Conway said he hopes to at least have a decision from the D.C. Circuit Court at that point, adding that requesting a stay on the imposed deadline pending the outcome of the litigation is also a possibility.
See the interview segment here:
More articles from the Chamber’s interview with Jack Conway will be posted later this week. Interview segments on the issues with all three of the 2015 governor’s race candidates will continue to be posted on Bottom Line in the lead up to the November elections.