Regulations to reduce carbon dioxide emissions at existing coal-fueled power plants will be a target of the new Republican-controlled Congress. U.S. Sen. Mark S. Kirk (R-Ill.) says he’s in favor of getting rid of the regulations proposed by President Obama last year, because he believes they will lead to the loss of coal industry jobs in Southern Illinois.

“They feel everybody just cares about the city of Chicago,” Kirk said. “I fear that this new regulation will put a lot of mines out of business.”


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The regulations are designed to reduce carbon emissions by 30 percent by 2030.

Kirk has shown support for legislation to combat climate change in the past, though he won’t say whether he believes it’s caused by humans. He’s not opposed to stronger emissions standards, but thinks they should be imposed on China, not the U.S.

“China is regarded as a developing country, so the biggest polluter on the planet doesn’t count,” Kirk said. “I think it does count. Mother Nature doesn’t really care the zip code of the polluter.”

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