Top Senate Republican tells states: ignore EPA carbon rules

The Senate’s top Republican is telling states to ignore a central part of President Barack Obama’s plans to curb the pollution blamed for global warming.

In an op-ed published Tuesday in the Lexington Herald-Leader, Majority Leader Mitch McConnell of Kentucky says states should hold off on submitting plans to cut carbon dioxide from power plants, as the rule would require.

McConnell says “refusing to go along” will give the courts time to figure out if it’s legal, and would give Congress more time to fight back.

The rule is expected to be final this summer. McConnell has long vowed to try to block the rules because of their toll on the coal industry.

Meanwhile, the EPA has requested $3.5 million in its budget to hire more lawyers to defend them.

Want a digest of WHYY’s programs, events & stories? Sign up for our weekly newsletter.

Help us get to 100% of our membership goal to support the reporters covering our region, the producers bringing you great local programs and the educators who teach all our children.