The U.S. Cattlemen’s Association (USCA) is expressing disappointment in the U.S. Senate’s failure to pass Senate Joint Resolution 26, which would have disapproved a rule submitted by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) relating to the agency’s endangerment finding and the cause of greenhouse gases under section 202(a) of the Clean Air Act.

In a procedural move, the Senate voted 53:47 to block the bill brought forward by Alaska Republican Senator Lisa Murkowski. All 41 Senate Republicans voted for Murkowski’s resolution and six Democratic Senators, Evan Bayh of Indiana, Ben Nelson of Nebraska, Jay Rockefeller of West Virginia, Mary Landrieu of Lousiana and Mark Pryor and Blanche Lincoln of Arkansas also supported the measure.

A 2007 Supreme Court ruling ordered the EPA to determine whether rising concentrations of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere pose a threat to the public health.

EPA administrators issued an endangerment finding last year, indicating that higher greenhouse gas concentrations create a risk of more flooding, more frequent and intense heat waves and rising sea levels. The finding is the basis for the federal government to impose more regulations on industries including production agriculture.
Jon Wooster, USCA President, San Lucas, CA said, "America’s agriculture producers sustain families around the globe and agriculture is a central core of the U.S. economy. U.S. farmers and ranchers are threatened by the EPA’s public health endangerment ruling, which exposes producers to expensive regulation and skyrocketing fuel and fertilizer costs to say nothing of the associated increases in food costs for consumers. This comes at a time when we should be encouraging economic growth, not imposing more economic burdens on small businesses."

"The EPA proposal leaves no room for common sense agreements and manipulates a decades old law into regulating an entire segment of the U.S. economy without regard for the consequences," continued Wooster. "More than 100 agriculture groups, including USCA, supported the Murkowski resolution. We are very disappointed in this vote."