U.S. Rep. Ed Whitfield, (KY-01), Chairman of the House Subcommittee on Energy and Power, and Senator Rand Paul (R-KY), today introduced legislation that will prevent the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) from awarding grants to projects outside of the United States under the Clean Air Act.
"It is outrageous how EPA has abused its discretion in allocating funds through these grants," Whitfield said. "At a time when our economy is struggling and Congress faces difficult spending decisions here at home, we cannot afford to spend millions in taxpayer dollars for so-called environmental projects in foreign countries. I just can't understand why we would be sending money to China for a project on swine manure. We need to ensure accountability for taxpayer dollars at every level, and this bill reins in irresponsible spending by the EPA."
Sen. Paul said, "At a time when our nation faces an exorbitant and ever-increasing national debt, we must rein in spending and make every taxpayer dollar wisely spent. Sending tens of millions of dollars overseas in grant allocations under the Clean Air Act is irresponsible and another instance of an out-of-control EPA. This bill removes EPA authority to continue to send our taxpayer dollars overseas, while reinstating more accountability here at home."
Under the Clean Air Act, EPA has the authority to issue grants to programs and projects around the world. Some examples of the projects EPA has supported through these grants include:
$141,450 to China to "quantify the environmental impacts from different biogas digesters used to treat swine manures in China."
$150,000 for clean cooking technology in Kenya, and
$180,000 to train Polish municipalities on landfill gas.
This bill will prohibit the EPA from awarding money to programs or activities that take place outside of the United States. Additionally, this bill will prevent grant applicants in the United States from sub-granting awards from the EPA to activities outside of the United States.