Sunday, June 26, 2016

Judge Swats Down Interior Anti-Fracking Regs

An attempt by the Obama administration to impose harsh regulations on fracking operations on public land has been thrown out by a Wyoming court, on the grounds that the Interior Department exceeded the bounds of its Congressional authority.
WASHINGTON — A federal judge on Tuesday night struck down an Obama administration regulation on the use of hydraulic fracturing, or fracking, for oil and gas on public lands, a blow to President Obama’s muscular stand on the extraction of fossil fuels on government lands.
The rule, released by the Interior Department in March of last year and scheduled to take effect this Friday, was designed to increase the safety of fracking. It would have required companies to comply with federal safety standards in the construction of fracking wells, and to disclose the use of some chemicals in the fracking process.
Judge Scott W. Skavdahl of Federal District Court in Wyoming ruled that the Interior Department lacked the authority from Congress to issue the regulation, and also noted that fracking was already subject to other regulations under state and federal law. . .
Naturally the Obama administration plans to appeal. I guess President Obama is still attempting to fulfill his promise to make energy prices skyrocket, regardless of the impact on jobs or the economic well being of ordinary Americans.
Unfortunately, if courts slap down half of all executive power grabs, the power and reach of the Federal government still continues to grow, if at only half the rate the President would prefer.

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