Senator Barbara Boxer, a California Democrat, vowed to use “every single tool available to me” in backing the Environmental Protection Agency’s regulation of greenhouse gases against Republican challenges.
Blocking the EPA from enforcing laws, including limits on carbon emissions from new and modified power plants and large factories, will “do harm to the American people,” Boxer, the chairman of the Senate Environment and Public Works Committee, said today at a news conference in Washington.
“Too much carbon pollution is a threat to society,” Boxer said.
Republicans in the House led by Representative Fred Upton of Michigan, chairman of the House Energy and Commerce Committee, are pledging to block the EPA from regulating greenhouse gases linked by scientists to global warming and adopting other “job-killing” regulations.
Clean-air and water rules don’t threaten job growth, Boxer said. The U.S. economy has tripled in value since the Clean Air Act was enacted in 1970, she said.
A healthy environment and a thriving economy go “hand in hand,” Boxer said.
Boxer’s defense of the EPA’s carbon rules, which took effect on Jan. 2, may be opposed by Democrats.
Senator Jay Rockefeller, a West Virginia Democrat, wants to delay carbon emissions limits for two years. Boxer said she expected President Barack Obama would veto a delay of the greenhouse-gas rules.
Boxer, who backed climate-change legislation that died in the Senate last year, said she would introduce a similar bill in the current Congress if she knew it would pass.
“We’re not going to do it if we don’t have the votes,” she said.