House Passes TRAIN Act

by Marlo Lewis on September 25, 2011

in Features

Post image for House Passes TRAIN Act

On Friday (September 23, 2011), the House passed a bill that would block two of the administration’s flagship Clean Air Act (CAA) regulations targeting coal-fired power plants. It would also establish a new Cabinet-level committee to examine the “cumulative and incremental impacts” of a dozen EPA actions affecting the electric power sector. The bill, known as the Transparency in Regulatory Analysis of Impacts on the Nation (TRAIN) Act (H.R. 2401), sponsored by Rep. John Sullivan (R-Okla.), passed by a vote of 233-180.

The TRAIN Act declares that two EPA regulations “shall be of no force and effect”: the Cross State Air Pollution Rule (CSAPR), finalized in August, and maximum available control technology standards regulations for hazardous air pollutants from electric generating units (Utility MACT Rule), finalized in May. EPA would be prohibited from promulgating a new cross state air pollution rule until three years after the multi-agency committee submits its regulatory impacts report to Congress (due August 1, 2012). EPA would also be prohibited from promulgating new hazardous air pollutant regulations for electric generating units until one year after the committee submits its report. [click to continue…]

Post image for Rep. Henry Waxman (D-Beverly Hills): Back to Form

A week ago, I poked fun at Rep. Henry Waxman (D-Beverly Hills) for acting the fool during a House Energy and Commerce Committee hearing on Republican legislation that would speed the permitting process for the Keystone XL Pipeline. Yet I also noted,

“While I disagree with everything he does, I nonetheless esteem Rep. Waxman as a master tactician. More than once, I’ve wished that the other party had someone as cunning as the Congressman from Beverly Hills.”

Last week, Rep. Waxman was off his game; this week, I’m sad to say, he has returned to form. Energy and Environment News (subscription required) reported this morning that Rep. Waxman and Energy and Commerce Ranking Member Bobby Rush (D-Illinois) yesterday fired off a letter to Committee Republicans, demanding the holdup of the “Transparency in Regulatory Analysis of Impacts on the Nation Act” (a.k.a., the TRAIN Act) over some arcane procedural matter. This sort of nitpicky stonewalling is classic Waxman.

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