The EPA option
The biggest potential news on the climate change front is that the Environmental Protection Agency is moving forward with carbon regulation, laying out rules that will cover major emitters, including all new coal plants.
Business doesn't want some fickle government agency on its back, so this could be used as leverage to actually pass a climate-change bill, particularly if the EPA decides to make clear exactly how much business doesn't want some fickle agency on its back. Another plausible outcome is that the Senate doesn't pass a climate bill but does pass a bill stopping the EPA from doing its job. And another option is that the EPA keeps regulation loose enough that it doesn't really change the conversation one way or the other. It all depends on how much the Obama administration wants to push on a climate bill, and how much the relevant legislators want to make a climate bill happen.
(For a look at what exactly it would mean for the EPA to regulate carbon, head here.)
May 14, 2010; 1:38 PM ET
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