Right Hooks

Energy Department Is Wreaking Its Own Economic Havoc

EPA has competition in DOE.

Jordan Candler · Oct. 9, 2015

Besides the separation of powers issue, the most alarming thing about the EPA’s accruing regulations is the financial burden to middle class America. The Wall Street Journal reminds us, however, that it’s not the only entity wreaking economic havoc in the name of salvaging the environment. Over the last eight years, the Energy Department has enacted dozens of its own regulations, stripping billions and billions from the economy every year. According to an American Action Forum study, “Since 2007 the Energy Department has finished more than 25 major rules — those costing more than $100 million — and imposed more than $8 billion in annual costs,” the Journal reports. Adding insult to injury, the agency is working on implementing 11 additional major rules before the end of Barack Obama’s second term. For some perspective, “The Clinton Administration’s footprint totaled six major rules in eight years,” writes the Journal, adding, “Many of Energy’s edicts cover humdrum household items: stiff efficiency standards for refrigerators, furnace fans and more.” Together, that adds up to big-time bills. And as the Journal points out, “As with every green dream, the poor suffer most. According to AAF, a family who bought a refrigerator, a furnace fan and a water heater could pay a hidden ‘regulatory tax’ of about $620 — more than a week’s pay for someone who earns $30,000 a year.” That’s not to mention the thousands of layoffs companies are being forced to make. Just one example: “The heating, ventilation and cooling industry — a perennial Energy Department target, with $4 billion in annual costs piled on since 2010 — has hemorrhaged 55,000 jobs since 2001.” What good are efficiency standards when the EPA and DOE are making it harder for Americans to stay employed, much less foot the bills?

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