Coal company uses glitch to swing for the fences against EPA rule

A large coal company's petition against the Environmental Protection Agency's proposed emissions rule for power plants is a legal swing for the fences, but a decades-old discrepancy in a technical amendment to the Clean Air Act might give it a chance, according to experts.

Separate House and Senate versions of the act, which was last amended in 1990, were never reconciled and therefore lead to different interpretations. Murray Energy Corp., which filed the petition June 18 in the D.C. Circuit Court, is hewing to the House version in claiming the EPA has overstepped its authority.

At issue is a "conforming amendment" used to smooth references to the EPA's air pollution program in the 1990 update with language deleted from the initial statute, passed in 1970. The chambers used different wording in the technical change.

Murray Energy and its backers argue that the House language outlaws regulating the source of emissions — in this case, power plants — using both section 111d, the part of the act used for the proposed limits on existing power plants, and section 112, under which the EPA has ordered power plant controls on mercury and air toxics that go into effect in 2016.
 Source: Washington Examiner
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