Texas Gov. Rick Perry speaks at the Conservative Political Action Committee annual conference in National Harbor, Md., Friday, March 7, 2014. Friday marks the second day of the annual Conservative Political Action Conference, which brings together prospective presidential candidates, conservative opinion leaders and tea party activists from coast to coast. (AP Photo/Susan Walsh)
HOUSTON (AP) — Texas Gov. Rick Perry has written to President Barack Obama criticizing his administration’s energy policies, EPA regulations and failure to approve the construction of a pipeline to carry tar sands crude from Canada to Gulf Coast refineries.
The letter, which reiterates much of Perry’s longstanding opposition to the Obama administration’s energy policies, comes as a bipartisan energy bill is stalled in Congress by Republican Senators demanding a vote on the Keystone XL Canada-to-Texas pipeline and on the EPA’s move to put greenhouse gas regulations on existing coal-fired power plants. The pipeline requires Obama’s approval because it would cross an international border.
Perry is considered a possible presidential contender in 2016 and his letter, dated Friday, touts Texas’ economy and what he called the state’s success at having both a robust energy industry and sound environmental regulations. Critics argue that Texas’ policies are more business-friendly than they are protective of the environment.
Perry told Obama in the letter that his “policies are strangling the energy industry.”
“You are waging a war on coal, kicking the can down the road on the Keystone XL pipeline and creating obstacles to onshore and offshore oil and gas production,” Perry wrote.
The three-page letter repeats Perry’s opposition to new EPA regulations on coal-fired power plants, including rules designed to limit mercury emissions and hold states accountable for pollution that affects downwind states. Last month, however, a federal appeals court upheld the agency’s rules on mercury, and the Supreme Court backed the EPA on its downwind pollution regulations.
Texas has been a primary litigant in these legal challenges.
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