The New York Times reports that a potential barrier to EPA climate rules no longer poses a threat to the EPA’s ambitious regulatory agenda for 2011:

It is now full-speed ahead for federal climate regulations set to take effect on Jan. 2 after the final legislative challenge to their implementation was put on ice Friday afternoon.

West Virginia Sen. Jay Rockefeller (D) said he is postponing his push for a vote on his bill to enact a two-year timeout on U.S. EPA’s ability to regulate greenhouse gases due to lack of bipartisan support.

After the midterm elections, many environmental policy analysts argued that the temporary cardiac arrest of cap and trade meant that President Obama and his administration had to look towards regulatory mechanisms to push their costly carbon-reduction preferences through the political process. However, voter preferences for solid economic growth and the creation of stable jobs seem to now cause a slight delay in the most intrusive of the EPA’s policies.

Boiler regulations which, according to estimates by Republicans in the Senate Environment and Public Works panel, could put 800,000 jobs at risk, have been delayed until April 2011. Moreover, the agency requested additional time to further analyze scientific and health studies regarding the impact of smog on humans until July 2011. I would applaud the agency’s caution in making premature decision that would put several hundred thousand jobs at risk at a time where official unemployment is at an unhealthy 9.8 percent, but I have the feeling that the delay has more to do with political feasibility rather than scientific merit. Unless the 112th Congress makes significant cuts to the EPA budget, the regulations and their negative employment impacts are poised to take effect next year.

Mark J. Perry from the American Enterprise Institute has a good piece covering some of the effects we may expect from the EPA’s destructive regulatory agenda.

The Environmental Protection Agency is preparing to regulate carbon dioxide emissions from power plants and large industries beginning in January. The agency maintains that power plants and factories can reduce emissions.

Since coal accounts for more than half of the electricity produced in the United States, and no technology for capturing and storing carbon power-plant emissions is commercially available yet, the EPA would force utilities to shut down many coal plants and use alternative energy sources instead.

EPA’s plan is troublesome. Our nation is finally beginning to emerge from one of the worst economic downturns in many years, and raising the cost of burning coal and other fossil fuels will stall the recovery.

The cost of switching fuels for utility companies will be in the tens of billions of dollars-and it will be passed directly to businesses and households in the form of higher electricity prices. Thousands of U.S. jobs could be in jeopardy.