Harrisburg, April 16, 2019 – State Senator John Yudichak (D-Luzerne/Carbon) has released the following statement regarding action taken today by the Environmental Quality Board:

“Today, at a meeting of the Environmental Quality Board (EQB) — of which I am a voting member, I voted to accept for consideration a rulemaking petition submitted by the Clean Air Council to adopt a proposed regulation establishing an economy-wide cap-and-trade program to reduce greenhouse gas emissions.  The submitted petition passed this procedural step, and now the proposed regulation goes to the Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection for evaluation.

However, I believe that the EQB rulemaking petition process is not the appropriate way for environmental policy of this breadth to be made, regardless of the validity of the idea.  In our system of government, the elected officials of the General Assembly make the laws. And policy proposals that would touch every aspect of our state economy, such as this, must be considered by those of us directly accountable to the citizens.

To that end, soon I will be introducing a resolution requiring the Legislative Budget and Finance Committee to conduct an in-depth study of how such a cap-and-trade system would work in Pennsylvania.  I hope that this will shift the discussion to its appropriate branch of government, and that it will provide the General Assembly with the information it needs to move forward in addressing the devastating effects of climate change.”