By Juliet Eilperin and Brady Dennis
For more than three years, the Trump administration has prided itself on working with industry to unshackle companies from burdensome environmental regulations. But as the Environmental Protection Agency prepares to finalize the latest in a long line of rollbacks, the nation’s power sector has sent a different message:
Thanks, but no thanks.
Exelon, one of the nation’s largest utilities, told the EPA that its effort to change a rule that has cut emissions of mercury and other toxins is “an action that is entirely unnecessary, unreasonable, and universally opposed by the power generation sector.”
Kathy Robertson, a senior manager for environmental policy at the company, said the industry long ago complied with the rule.
“And it works,” she said. “The sector has gotten so much cleaner as a result of this rule.”
“They’ve unsheathed an incredibly sharp sword,” said University of Chicago professor Michael Greenstone, an energy and environmental economist. “And there’s no reason that sword can’t be used to roll back other regulations that have produced extraordinarily large benefits for American society.”