On Friday, the House of Representatives voted 233 to 175 to stop the Obama administration’s so-called “war on coal,” passing a bill that would limit the EPA’s regulatory authority over greenhouse gases and limit the Interior Department’s ability to issue coal mining rules.
“The Obama administration’s ‘all of the above but nothing from below’ energy policy threatens our electricity independence,” wrote Republicans Rep. Fred Upton of Michigan and Sen. Jim Inhofe of Oklahoma in an op-ed Thursday.
The vote was largely split along party lines, with 19 Democrats voting with 214 Republicans. Meanwhile, 13 Republicans broke with their party and voted against the bill along with 162 Democrats.
The Stop the War on Coal Act of 2012 is a bundle of provisions which the House has already passed, including one prohibiting the EPA from regulating greenhouse gas emissions and another which is an alternative to EPA rules for coal ash disposal and management.
The bill also restricts the Interior Department from issuing regulations regarding surface mining operations and limits the EPA’s ability to veto permits issued under Section 404 of the Clean Water Act, while also promoting the cooperation between the federal government and the states regarding water pollution controls.
“Since taking office, the Obama Administration has waged a multi-front war on coal – on coal jobs, on the small businesses in the mining supply chain, and on the low-cost energy that millions of Americans rely upon,” said Washington Republican Rep. Doc Hastings on the House floor Thursday.