Friday, October 14, 2005

Energy Prices Driving Inflation Higher

Here it comes, from the Bureau of Labor Statistics:

The Consumer Price Index for All Urban Consumers (CPI-U) increased 1.2 percent in September, before seasonal adjustment, the Bureau of Labor Statistics of the U.S. Department of Labor reported today. The September level of 198.8 (1982-84=100) was 4.7 percent higher than in September 2004.
This is just the begining of what will be a long, cold winter. Heating costs are expected to go up as much as 30% in Delaware. But we can breathe dirtier air as we freeze. The Washington Post reports that BushCo is proposing new regulations to make it easier for old power plants to continue or even increase emissions:

The Environmental Protection Agency issued draft regulations yesterday that would ease long-standing pollution controls on older, dirtier power plants by judging these plants by the hourly rate of emissions rather than the total annual output.
EPA Administrator Stephen L. Johnson said the administration is confident its recent efforts to curb harmful nitrogen oxide and sulfur dioxide pollution by establishing a separate cap-and-trade system will do more to clean the air than the New Source Review rule the agency seeks to modify.

Of course, the recently passed energy monstrosity was supposed to increase supply, but we aren't hearing much about how that's supposed to work. Instead, we can expect more efforts to ease environmental regulations to benefit power companies.


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