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Government

W.Va. Attorney General Morrisey Teases Litigation Over Biden’s Carbon Reduction Plan

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Janet Kunicki
/
West Virginia Public Broadcasting

West Virginia Attorney General Patrick Morrisey has quickly come out in opposition of President Joe Biden’s plan to address climate change.

Biden announced parts of his plan on Earth Day, which was Thursday, during a virtual summit alongside 40 heads of government from across the globe. The plan aims to reduce carbon emissions in the United States by 50 percent by the year 2030.

In a Friday news conference, Morrisey teased a court challenge to Biden’s climate plan, in the vein of litigation he brought forth in 2015 over President Barack Obama’s Clean Power Plan.

“We've been down this road before with some success,” Morrisey said Friday. “And it looks like we're going to have to go down there again.”

Morrisey said West Virginians and Americans should be “deeply concerned” with Biden’s climate plan.

The three-term Republican state attorney general argues that Biden’s climate proposal will drive up energy prices by making the nation dependent on energy resources from China and cost West Virginia and the rest of the U.S. jobs.

“I read the The Obama Clean Power Plan when it first came out — and we've been going through reading all this,” he said. “This puts the Clean Power Plan on steroids and much more.”

The Biden administration has focused on the clean energy sector in recent weeks.

As part of a proposed $2 trillion for retooling the nation’s infrastructure, the president has touted good-paying, climate-friendly jobs in Appalachia and other coal-producing parts of the country. Under Biden’s infrastructure plan, $100 billion would be dedicated to the electric grid and clean energy.

When it comes to reducing carbon emissions, Morrisey argued Friday that Biden does not have the power under the Constitution to enact such sweeping policy without congressional approval.

“He's either going to have to give up or he's gonna have to try to go it alone,” Morrisey said. “But there's no statutory authority for President Biden to go alone and to make the kind of transformational challenges to the entire economy that would allow them to meet the commitment.”


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