Chamber to fight EPA's GHG program, excessive financial reform

Nick Snow
OGJ Washington Editor

WASHINGTON, DC, Jan. 12 -- The US Chamber of Commerce will continue efforts to keep the US Environmental Protection Agency from implementing greenhouse gas emission regulations under the Clean Air Act, Chamber Pres. Thomas J. Donahue said in his annual State of American Business address. Chamber also plans to fight excessive financial reforms that would unduly restrict use of derivatives, he added.

The rules are part of a federal “regulatory tsunami” that poses the biggest single threat to jobs, US global competitiveness, and the future of American enterprise, Donahue maintained.

“At the federal level alone, regulations already fill 150,000 pages of fine-print text and cost Americans $1.7 trillion/year,” he said. “Many of these rules are necessary and business strongly supports them. Yet in recent years, we have seen an unprecedented explosion of new regulatory activity. Furthermore, the [Obama] administration is likely to turn increasingly to the regulatory agencies now that getting legislation out of Congress could be more difficult.”

Donahue said the nation’s largest business organization would go on fighting what it considers unilateral regulation of GHGs under the CAA, which EPA began to develop following a 2007 US Supreme Court ruling that it the federal agency has that authority. The regulations began to go into effect at the beginning of 2011 with a tailoring rule which initially targets refiners, chemical plants, and other major industrial facilities believed to be the largest GHG emitters.

The regulations, if unchecked, eventually could involve 6 million entities, including small businesses, hotels, warehouses, and churches, Donahue warned. “Before any of these facilities could build or expand, they would have to get preconstruction permits that take 6-9 months to obtain at a cost in excess of $100,000/permit,” he said. “Even then, the permits could be challenged in court. This could seriously disrupt construction activity across our nation and throw a lot of people out of work.”

He said Chamber would support bipartisan legislation that would delay or stop EPA’s current GHG program and return efforts to address global climate change to Congress.

Dodd-Frank reforms
Donahue said Chamber also is heavily involved in the regulatory rulemaking triggered by passage of the Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act. He noted that the new law contains 259 mandated rulemakings, 188 suggested rulemakings, 63 reports, and 59 studies, adding, “My grandchildren will be old and retired before it is all implemented.”

“We are particularly concerned that the new Consumer Financial Protection Bureau does not use its broad authority in ways that deny small businesses and consumers the credit and financial products they need,” he said. “We want to make sure that Main Street end-users are still able to use derivatives in an effective way to manage their legitimate business risk—without sidelining billions of dollars in productive capital and costing tens of thousands of jobs.

“And although our pending litigation against the [US Securities and Exchange Commission] over its proxy access rule has delayed its implementation, that battle is far from over,” Donahue said. “We’ll continue to oppose proposals that would expand the ability of special interest shareholders such as unions to exploit proxy access rules to the detriment of companies, jobs, and all shareholders.”

He said Chamber would use a broad array of tools to address these and other regulations that it considers excessive, including efforts to limit funding and more applications of the Congressional Review Act. “Yet the time has come to reform the regulatory process itself—to restore some badly needed balance and accountability to the system. This could be done by giving Congress the right to vote up or down on major rules before they take effect, and by strengthening the burden of proof that all agencies would have to demonstrate in court when they are imposing major rules,” he suggested.

Donahue said new regulations also provide new opportunities for lawsuits. “The need for legal reform as well as courtroom advocacy on behalf of business will be greater than ever in the coming year and beyond,” he said. “Our Institute for Legal Reform and our law firm, the National Chamber Litigation Center, will therefore play a critical role in the Chamber’s ongoing program of work.”

Chamber also will form a new group of regulatory experts to tell policymakers, the media, and the public the story of massive impacts of regulations on business, he said.

Contact Nick Snow at nicks@pennwell.com.

Related Articles

Oil, gas infrastructure investments essential, House panel told

02/04/2015 Investments in oil and gas transportation and storage should move ahead because they are essential in continuing the US economic recovery and North...

EPA suggests DOS reconsider Keystone XL climate impact conclusions

02/03/2015 The US Department of State might want to reconsider its conclusions regarding potential climate impacts from the proposed Keystone XL crude oil pip...

Obama’s proposed fiscal 2016 budget recycles oil tax increases

02/02/2015 US President Barack Obama has proposed his federal budget for fiscal 2016 that he said was designed to help a beleaguered middle class take advanta...

So much for cooperation

02/02/2015 Congressional majority leaders and the Obama administration came into 2015 pledging to at least try to be less combative and more cooperative in ru...

Woodside gets NEB approval for British Columbia LNG exports

02/02/2015 Woodside Energy Holdings Pty. Ltd. has received approval from Canada’s National Energy Board on its application for a 25-year natural gas export li...

Data refute Lew's claims about taxes paid by producers

02/02/2015

On the subject of taxation, administration officials count on the public to believe anything.

Kerry expects to receive other agencies’ Keystone XL reports soon

02/02/2015 US Sec. of State John F. Kerry said he expects to receive other federal agencies and departments’ reports soon on the proposed Keystone XL crude oi...

Iran yields to Russia in talks over Caspian resources

02/02/2015 Iranian acquiescence to Russia, to which the Islamic Repubic increasingly turns in response to pressure from the West, has become a standard featur...

US oil, gas industry eager to build on past successes

02/02/2015 The US oil and gas industry entered 2015 optimistically as a dramatically improved US supply outlook's economic and security benefits became increa...
White Papers

Three Tips to Improve Safety in the Oil Field

Working oil fields will always be tough work with inherent risks. There’s no getting around that. Ther...
Sponsored by

Pipeline Integrity: Best Practices to Prevent, Detect, and Mitigate Commodity Releases

Commodity releases can have catastrophic consequences, so ensuring pipeline integrity is crucial for p...
Sponsored by

AVEVA’s Digital Asset Approach - Defining a new era of collaboration in capital projects and asset operations

There is constant, intensive change in the capital projects and asset life cycle management. New chall...
Sponsored by

Transforming the Oil and Gas Industry with EPPM

With budgets in the billions, timelines spanning years, and life cycles extending over decades, oil an...
Sponsored by

Asset Decommissioning in Oil & Gas: Transforming Business

Asset intensive organizations like Oil and Gas have their own industry specific challenges when it com...
Sponsored by

Squeezing the Green: How to Cut Petroleum Downstream Costs and Optimize Processing Efficiencies with Enterprise Project Portfolio Management Solutions

As the downstream petroleum industry grapples with change in every sector and at every level, includin...
Sponsored by

7 Steps to Improve Oil & Gas Asset Decommissioning

Global competition and volatile markets are creating a challenging business climate for project based ...
Sponsored by

The impact of aging infrastructure in process manufacturing industries

Process manufacturing companies in the oil and gas, utilities, chemicals and natural resource industri...
Sponsored by
Available Webcasts


OGJ's Midyear Forecast 2015

When Fri, Jul 10, 2015

This webcast is to be presented by OGJ Editor Bob Tippee and Senior Economic Editor Conglin Xu.  They will summarize the Midyear Forecast projections in key categories, note important changes from January’s forecasts, and examine reasons for the adjustments.

register:WEBCAST


Predictive Analytics in your digital oilfield - Optimize Production Yield and Reduce Operational Costs

When Tue, Jul 7, 2015

Putting predictive analytics to work in your oilfield can help you anticipate failures, plan and schedule work in advance, eliminate emergency work and catastrophic failures, and at the same time you can optimize working capital and improve resource utilization.  When you apply analytic capabilities to critical production assets it is possible to reduce non-productive time and increase your yield.

Learn how IBM's analytics capabilities can be applied to critical production assets with the goal of reducing non-productive time, increasing yield and reducing operations costs.

register:WEBCAST



On Demand

Cognitive Solutions for Upstream Oil and Gas

Fri, Jun 12, 2015

The oil & gas sector is under pressure on all sides. Reserves are limited and it’s becoming increasingly expensive to find and extract new resources. Margins are already being squeezed in an industry where one wrong decision can cost millions. Analyzing data used in energy exploration can save millions of dollars as we develop ways to predict where and how to extract the world’s massive energy reserves.

This session with IBM Subject Matter Experts will discuss how IBM Cognitive Solutions contribute to the oil and gas industry using predictive analytics and cognitive computing, as well as real time streaming for exploration and drilling.

register:WEBCAST


The Alternative Fuel Movement: Four Need-to-Know Excise Tax Complexities

Thu, Jun 4, 2015

Discussion on how to approach, and ultimately embrace, the alternative fuel market by pulling back the veil on excise tax complexities. Taxes may be an aggravating part of daily operations, but their accuracy is crucial in your path towards business success.

register:WEBCAST


Emerson Micro Motion Videos

Careers at TOTAL

Careers at TOTAL - Videos

More than 600 job openings are now online, watch videos and learn more!

 

Click Here to Watch

Other Oil & Gas Industry Jobs

Search More Job Listings >>
Stay Connected