What: All Issues : Environment : Air Pollution : H.J. Res 2. Fiscal 2003 Omnibus Appropriations/Vote to Ease Clean Air Rules for Polluters.
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H.J. Res 2. Fiscal 2003 Omnibus Appropriations/Vote to Ease Clean Air Rules for Polluters.
senate Roll Call 11     Jan 22, 2003
Y = Conservative
N = Progressive
Winning Side:
Conservative

An amendment offered by Senator James Inhofe (R-OK) to the 2003 federal budget proposes changes to the New Source Review (NSR) section of the Clean Air Act. Currently, NSR mandates that companies rebuilding or updating coal-fired power plants in ways that would increase pollution undergo an environmental review (conducted by the EPA) of the source of those new emissions. Furthermore, the NSR program requires new facilities to install the "best demonstrated technology" to control emissions and requires older facilities to update their equipment to "state of the art" when they do major modifications. Inhofe's amendment would weaken environmental standards by allowing sources of pollution (factories, etc.) to inflate their emissions baselines, or to be designated as so-called "clean units" for a decade or more. That way, even modifications that increase emissions will not trigger environmental review and the use of better, more effective pollution controls. According to a study commissioned by EPA, the new rules would increase air pollution by 120 tons at just two factories. Progressives opposed this amendment because it weakens environmental protections on clean air. Inhofe's amendment was adopted 51-45.

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