Biggest Coal Co. Files Legal Challenge Against EPA
Peabody Energy, America’s largest coal company, has filed a 240-page legal challenge against the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, saying it relied on flawed climate change science when it decided to regulate greenhouse gas emissions.
Peabody filed a petition in the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia on Feb. 12, seeking a review of the EPA’s decision in December that greenhouse gases pose a danger to public health, BusinessWeek reported.
The EPA’s “endangerment finding” would allow regulators to control carbon dioxide emissions from coal-fired power plants under the Clean Air Act.
“Peabody is, in effect, challenging the right of the current U.S. federal government to introduce cap-and-trade regulations by the ‘back door,’” the Climate Depot Web site observed.
Peabody maintains that the finding relied too heavily on a United Nations panel’s disputed work, according to BusinessWeek.
The U.N.’s Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change concluded in 2007 that carbon dioxide and other greenhouse gases are “very likely” to blame for global warming.
But that conclusion was challenged following the “climategate” scandal, when e-mails leaked in November from the University of East Anglia’s Climatic Research Unit in Britain indicated that researchers sought to keep some data out of the U.N. body’s findings to bolster their case for man-made global warming.
Peabody’s petition argues that the EPA must reconsider its endangerment finding “based on all the new material from climategate that was not available during the original EPA ‘comment period’ and which is central to the outcome that EPA reached,” Climate Depot disclosed.
Peabody spokeswoman Beth Sutton said in a statement, “There is no sufficient basis to implement regulations that would harm a fragile economy, further suppress investment and raise energy costs for Americans.”
St. Louis-based Peabody had sales of 244 million tons of coal last year. Its coal products fuel 10 percent of all U.S. electricity generation and 2 percent of worldwide generation.