Overnight Energy: Battle lines drawn in climate rule fight

CALL IT 'WEST VIRGINIA V. EPA': Supporters and opponents of the Obama administration's climate rule for power plants drew their battle lines on Monday. 

The U.S. Chamber of Commerce and other business groups previewed their legal case against the Clean Power Plan. They took a political stab at the rule, as well, calling it a bludgeon for Obama to use during international climate change negotiations later this year. 

"I do believe it's fair to say that there is a political aspiration here, to show leadership in Paris and to encourage or coerce other countries to follow suit," Karen Harbert, the president of the Chamber's Institute for 21st Century Energy told reporters.  


"As they admit, without other countries doing something, we do nothing with this regulation to address the issue of greenhouse gas emissions."

The White House, for its part, took exception and tweeted examples of businesses that have embraced the rule.

Rep. Ed WhitfieldWayne (Ed) Edward WhitfieldBottom Line Why Republicans took aim at an ethics watchdog What Azerbaijan wants from Israel? MORE (R-Ky.) formally filed Congressional Review Act resolutions against rules for both existing and new power plants on Monday. A group of senators, led by Sen. Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.), is set to do the same soon, with a vote expected to be scheduled soon after. 

At least one Republican, however, will be voting against the CRA resolutions: Sen. Kelly AyotteKelly Ann AyotteBottom line Bottom line Bottom Line MORE (R-N.H.) came out in favor of the climate rule on Monday. 

"After carefully reviewing this plan and talking with members of our business community, environmental groups, and other stakeholders, I have decided to support the Clean Power Plan to address climate change through clean energy solutions that will protect our environment," said Ayotte, who faces a tough reelection battle.

In a sign of the ballooning litigation against the rule, the D.C. Circuit Court consolidated 21 lawsuits against the plan into one case on Monday afternoon. Court-watchers should commit the name to memory: State of West Virginia v. Environmental Protection Agency, No. 15-1363.

Read more on Ayotte here and the Chamber here

TOMORROW IN THE HILL: What's the fallout from Ayotte's move to endorse the climate rule? Find out tomorrow

ON TAP TUESDAY I: The Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee will hear testimony on the Obama administration's proposed mountaintop removal rule. Janice Schneider, the assistant secretary for land and minerals management at the Department of the Interior, is scheduled to testify. 

ON TAP TUESDAY II: Rep. Mike Simpson (R-Idaho) will keynote a Bipartisan Policy Center event on nuclear waste disposal. Norm Dicks, the former congressman and co-chair of the BPC's Nuclear Waste Council, will also speak. 


Minnesota Gov. Mark Dayton (D) will visit two mines -- one, a successful and well-run operation and another, a Superfund site -- before deciding on a permitting request for a copper-nickel project, the Minneapolis Star Tribune reports.

The new premier of Alberta, Canada, has appointed an experienced diplomat to represent the province in Washington, D.C., the Edmonton Sun reports. The last representative largely focused on trying to get the Obama administration to approve the Keystone XL pipeline. 

Colorado's Republican attorney general has filed suit against the Clean Power Plan, but Gov. John Hickenlooper (D), who supports the plan, wants the state Supreme Court to decide if the move is legal, the Denver Post reports


Check out Monday's stories... 

-Industry study: Mining rule would kill 281k jobs 
-Coal company sues over 'destructive' EPA ozone standards 
-GOP rep: Congress should focus more on climate change 
-Chamber: Obama climate rule meant to 'coerce' other nations 
-Chinese firm to buy Texas oil fields 
-Vulnerable GOP senator backs Obama's climate rule 
-Obama turns to climate deal 
-Wave of litigation hits Obama climate rule 
-Week ahead: GOP moves to block Obama climate rule 

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