Rutledge Seeks to Intervene in EPA’s Proposed 111(d) Rule
February 13, 2015
LITTLE ROCK – Arkansas Attorney General Leslie Rutledge announced today that she has filed a motion to intervene in a federal lawsuit against the Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) proposed 111(d) rule. Rutledge released the following statement:
“This proposed rule from the EPA is yet another example of an overreaching federal government that will harm Arkansas’s utility ratepayers, as well as have a devastating impact on the economy as a whole. As Attorney General, I will always seek to protect Arkansans. The EPA should withdraw this rule immediately.”
Arkansas is seeking to intervene in the suit against the EPA because of the significant and costly impact it would have on the Arkansas economy and its utility ratepayers. Rutledge is seeking to intervene in order to join the lawsuit with attorneys general from West Virginia, Alabama, Alaska, Indiana, Kansas, Louisiana, Nebraska, Ohio, Oklahoma, South Dakota, Wyoming and Kentucky.
As indicated in the motion, Arkansas is required to meet the sixth most stringent obligation of all the states under the proposed 111(d) rule, yet Arkansas ranks 46th in per capita income. The EPA proposes emissions rate reductions of 41 percent and 44 percent as interim and final requirements. The drastic reductions required under the proposed rule will negatively impact existing industry, future economic development and electric ratepayers in the State of Arkansas.
On June 18, 2014, Ohio-based coal company Murray Energy Corporation filed a petition for an extraordinary writ in the U.S. Court of Appeals in Washington, D.C., challenging the EPA's authority to regulate carbon dioxide emissions from existing coal-fired power plants under Section 111(d) of the Clean Air Act. Coal-fired power plants already are regulated under a separate section of the Clean Air Act, and the law expressly prohibits the double regulation of such plants. On August 15, 2014, Murray Energy Corporation filed a petition for review in the U.S. Court of Appeals challenging the EPA’s authority to regulate carbon dioxide emissions from existing coal-fired power plants under Section 111(d) of the Clean Air Act. In an order on Nov. 13, 2014, these cases were consolidated.