Public utilities differ on gas regulation

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BOB MOON:Climate change legislation has stalled in Congress, though there are some Senate mutterings it could be resurrected soon. Starting next year, the Environmental Protection Agency is proposing to regulate greenhouse gas emissions through the Clean Air Act. Several business groups and utilities oppose that. And one association has backed efforts to block the EPA.

But as Jennifer Collins reports from the Marketplace Sustainability Desk, it turns out that association doesn't speak for all its members.

Jennifer Collins: The American Public Power Association touched off quite a flurry. This week, the trade group urged lawmakers to bar the EPA from regulating greenhouse gases. Then, some lawmakers said association members complained of misrepresentation. So they told the trade group to basically back off.

Nick Braden: Well, we're going to formally respond.

Nick Braden is with the association. He says this is all about who should regulate greenhouse gases. He wants Congress to pass rules, not the EPA.

Braden: We just believe that legislation is the better vehicle.

Lynn Best: We don't see things the same.

Lynn Best is with association member Seattle City Light. She says the question is how fast to regulate.

Best: It looks like the legislation is going to take, unfortunately, a pretty long time. And we think this is too urgent and it's too vital to wait.

She says global warming is drying up snow that feeds their hydroelectric dams. So the faster greenhouse gases are regulated, the better.

I'm Jennifer Collins for Marketplace.

About the author

Jennifer Collins is a reporter for the Marketplace portfolio of programs. She is based in Los Angeles, where she covers media, retail, the entertainment industry and the West Coast.
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What both the EPA and these business groups, though not all such groups, and most members of Congress, are assuming is that the wildest hype about global warming is true. On the contrary, it seems like every week for the past several months another claim is proved false, revised to claim less, or otherwise called into question--for instance, the embattled former head of the East Anglia Climate Research Unit admitted that there's been no statistically significant warming for the past decade. This continuing story should have been bigger than this series or the Copenhagen series--and the original whistle-blower leak substantiating fraud allegations actually broke around the time of the Copenhagen conference--yet Marketplace hasn't even mentioned once since that story that there are even some questions about the degree to which human activity influences global warming. This is hardly journalism.

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