Costly Regulations Expected To Be Bad For Business
In a White House ceremony on Monday, President Obama “unveiled a landmark set” of climate change regulations in a plan that mandates that states “cut emissions from power plants,” Bloomberg News reported. In his comments Obama said, “No challenge poses a greater threat to our future and future generations than a changing climate. We’re the first generation to feel the effects of climate change, and the last generation that can do something about it.” Response to the regulations, which mandate that each state submit its own plan to the EPA by 2018 for overall US reductions of greenhouse gases by 26% to 28% by 2025, was swift from all sides of the debate.
In Colorado, the Denver Business Journal noted reaction to the plan from Colorado political and business leaders. State Senate President Bill Cadman (R-Colorado Springs) expressed disappointment with the regulations, promising he and Senate Republicans “would propose a bill in January 2016 that requires the Colorado Public Utilities Commission to hold public hearings on the state’s compliance plan.” In additional coverage on the plan, the Denver Business Journal noted that Western Resource Advocates clean energy program director John Nielsen said the new regulations to decrease Colorado’s carbon dioxide emissions by 40% in 2030 compared to 2012 levels won’t be problematic, as the state is already 75% towards this goal “based on actions already taken and programs implemented and expected.” Furthermore, Nielsen said the state is 85% towards its first reduction deadline of 2022.
What Happens Next
Colorado will have until 2018 to submit its plan to the EPA. However, it’s unclear if there may be alterations to the current Federal proposal in the interim. For now, current EPA regulations will remain in place.
What This Means To Small Businesses
Tougher new EPA power regulations are troublesome because small businesses will inevitably bear the brunt of costs to curb power use or switch to costly green energy sources. As NFIB President and CEO Dan Danner recently pointed out, “Small businesses are especially sensitive to higher electricity prices and so are their customers.” However, there are a few years until the EPA must have plans from each state for emissions reductions. In the interim, Colorado’s small business community should prepare for a fight against these anti-business regulations.
Note: this article is intended to keep small business owners up on the latest news. It does not necessarily represent the policy stances of NFIB.