‘Cap ‘n Trading’ ADEQ Authority

November 26, 2008 by  

Members of the interim legislative committee evaluating the work of the Arizona Department of Environmental Quality is asking the right questions of the agency’s actions over the past year driving tough new auto emissions standards. Questions that Director Owens has no explanation for except to pass the buck to Governor Napolitano, who directed him to set public policy by rule as opposed to laws passed by the Legislature. 

Frustrated that the Legislature has not jumped on the Democrat-driven Climate Change bandwagon, imposing statewide regulations and taxes (AKA Cap-n’ Trade) on industry to reduce carbon emissions regionally, ADEQ approved new rules earlier this year requiring each automobile manufacturer to reduce overall greenhouse gas emissions from its total sales in the state by 37 percent by 2016. Furthermore, the agency mandated that, beginning in 2012, 10 percent of all vehicles sold in Arizona have no emissions at all, whether powered by electricity, hydrogen or some other source. The percentage increases to16 percent by 2022.

What is the purpose of the legislature if the Governor and state agencies can make laws and carry them out, too?

Alas for ADEQ, though. Since this committee makes recommendations to the legislature regarding the agency’s future, we have yet to see which ADEQ policies stand and which agency authority will be “capped” by the legislature under new Executive leadership, Governor-designate Jan Brewer.

This isn’t the first time the Governor has overreached executive authority, of course, but it is amazingly far-reaching in its potential to negatively impact already stressed economic conditions in the state by increasing costs to the auto and energy-producers, which will be passed on to consumers through higher prices.

Lest these 50 states suffer the same economic repercussions through a similar federal mandate, let’s hope President-elect Obama will listen to industry leaders and consumers before attempting to force his draconian climate change agenda. For now, we may be able to dodge the bullet here in Arizona at least.

For the top 10 reasons to oppose “Cap n’ Trade”, see: http://www.freedomworks.org/publications/top-10-reasons-to-oppose-cap-and-trade


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