The EPA’s Reckless Rush To ‘Go Green’ In Indiana

Unelected bureaucrats would force Hoosiers into double-digit utility increases and dependence on unreliable energy sources.

Henglein and Steets. Getty Images. Solar panels and wind turbines in field
Henglein and Steets. Getty Images.

Left-wing bureaucrats at the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) are working hard to force states to abandon reliable, low-cost, fossil fuel-based energy in favor of unreliable, high-cost, solar, wind, and battery-based power.

The EPA’s latest scheme includes a power grab for the grid by imposing several new regulatory commandments that states must follow under the Clean Power Plan and the Clean Air Act. The intended effect of these regulations is to replace the fossil fuel-fired plants that form the backbone of America’s electric grid with renewable energy sources, such as wind and solar.

I call it Joe Biden’s plan to wreck the grid — a grid which provides the energy needed to charge our iPhones, access the internet, heat and cool our homes, and power our schools, businesses, factories, farms, and hospitals.

This reckless and radical scheme jeopardizes the safety and security of America’s electrical grid and forces all of us to pay far more for the electricity we take for granted.

Indeed, the Indiana Municipal Power Agency — which provides electricity to many rural customers — projects a double-digit rate increase under the Biden administration’s Clean Power Plan 2.0.

The EPA’s pet project to force the grid to go green is also illegal — which is why my office is fighting these regulations in court.

The Good Neighbor Rule

The first legal challenge is to the “good neighbor” rule imposed under the Clean Air Act, which requires states to reduce ozone pollution from in-state sources transported downwind into other states. 

Although the EPA establishes national air quality standards, Congress has reserved to the states the authority to determine how those standards will be met — including those relating to states’ “good neighbor” obligations. This dual allocation of responsibility between the federal government and the states reflects the Clean Air Act’s “cooperative federalism” model. 

As the U.S. Supreme Court noted in Union Elec. Co. v. EPA, each state enjoys “wide discretion in formulating its [air pollution] plan.” Biden bureaucrats apparently never got that memo. In 2022, the EPA arbitrarily rejected the good neighbor plans of 23 states, including Indiana’s. To make things worse, instead of allowing states to remedy any alleged deficiencies in their plans, as the Clean Air Act contemplates, the EPA imposed a one-size-fits-all plan on the states. 

In truth, Biden bureaucrats aren’t interested in working with Indiana or any other state. So much for the “cooperative federalism” model; under this Administration, it’s do as you’re told. However, Hoosiers don’t bend the knee to D.C. bureaucrats, which is why my office has joined the attorneys general of Ohio and West Virginia in a legal challenge to the EPA’s “good neighbor” rule.

In addition to the dubious legality of the “good neighbor” rule, the EPA has failed to address where the energy to support the electric grid will come from after fossil fuel-based sources are forced offline.

The company managing the electrical grid for Indiana and other states, PJM, recently reported that the current pace of new energy sources, such as solar and wind, would be “insufficient” to keep up with expected retirements of fossil-fuel energy sources mandated by the EPA.

The report explains that wind and solar energy sources are “intermittent and limited duration resources”—meaning the sun doesn’t always shine and the wind doesn’t always blow. Thus, for each megawatt of electricity generated by fossil fuels lost under the EPA rule, it will take multiple megawatts of wind and solar energy to replace it.

Don’t be fooled by the Administration’s green energy gas bags touting the alleged superiority of solar and wind power. They may have a role in meeting America’s future power needs, but they are inferior when it comes to producing reliable power.

Joe Biden claims that his energy policies will make electricity more affordable, but Hoosiers know hogwash when they hear it. Great Britain and Germany live under the same mandates the Biden administration pushes here, and people there pay about three times more for electricity than Americans.

Rather than being dissuaded by these facts, Biden bureaucrats are doubling down. The EPA just unveiled the final version of a rule regulating greenhouse gas emissions from power plants. I’m proud that my office, in conjunction with West Virginia, is leading a 25-state strong coalition challenging the new rule—a rehash of the Obama-era “Clean Power Plan” found unlawful by the Supreme Court in West Virginia v. Environmental Protection Agency. Like its predecessor, Clean Power Plan 2.0 would shutter fossil fuel power plants, despite the Court’s rejection of the notion that federal bureaucrats can dictate “how Americans will get their energy.”

Given the advent of new technologies with an unquenchable thirst for electricity, regulations that reduce the power supply can only be called reckless. As demand for power grows and these radical green policies suppress supply, electricity prices will surge — jolting the most vulnerable Hoosiers.

Joe Biden’s energy bureaucrats are fully committed to their radical and reckless agenda to wreck the grid, despite the untold costs to Americans’ security and pocketbooks. That’s why Indiana and our partner states are committed to challenging their actions in court and pulling the plug on their illegal power grab.

* * *

Todd Rokita is Indiana’s attorney general.

The views expressed in this piece are those of the author and do not necessarily represent those of The Daily Wire.

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The Daily Wire   >  Read   >  The EPA’s Reckless Rush To ‘Go Green’ In Indiana