Earlier today EPA Administrator Gina McCarthy confirmed statements made in an EPA/DOJ D.C. Circuit filing that the CPP was sent to the Federal Register on September 4, 2015, and that publication should occur in October. Senator Jim Inhofe (R-Okla.) raised the timing issue during this morning’s Senate Environment and Public Works Committee oversight hearing on the Gold King mine waste-water spill. The video of the hearing can be found here.
In relevant part, at 54:44 in the video, Senator Inhofe raises the issue:
Sen. Inhofe: While you’re here, the Department of Justice recently told a federal court that EPA would submit the final carbon rules to the Federal Register by September 4th and that publication would occur by late October. Did the EPA submit the rules to the Federal Register by September 4th?
Admin. McCarthy: I’m sorry, sir, I don’t have those numbers in my head. I didn’t expect this question.
Sen. Inhofe: Well I knew that, but it’s very significant though… we need to know. That was the deadline that was given and whether or not you complied with that deadline.
. . .
Sen. Inhofe: Are you aware that a delay in publication until the end of October interferes with the ability of Congress and the public to legally challenge the rules before the big show in Paris?[*]
Admin. McCarthy: Sir, I am aware that both you and I want this to get in the Federal Register as soon as possible.
And later, at 1:30:45, Administrator McCarthy follows up and confirms the dates.
* The “big show in Paris” refers to the 21st Session of the Conference of the Parties to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (COP21/CMP11), which is scheduled to be held in Le Bourget, France (a Paris suburb) from November 30 to December 11, 2015.