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W.Va. joins fight to EPA greenhouse gas rules

CHARLESTON, W.Va. (AP) -- West Virginia's governor and attorney general are joining two other states that are seeking to challenge federal environmental rules on greenhouse gas emissions.

Gov. Earl Ray Tomblin and Attorney General Patrick Morrisey announced Friday the state has filed a friend of the court brief asking the U.S. Supreme Court to hear a challenge to Environmental Protection Agency rules. The rules would allow the federal government to regulate greenhouse gas emissions from stationary sources.

West Virginia, Kansas and Montana want the U.S. Supreme Court to clarify that the EPA has misinterpreted the Clean Air Act and has overstepped its regulatory authority.

Burning coal and other fossil fuels releases large amounts of carbon dioxide and other gases blamed for climate change. In February, an EPA report said power plants remain the largest stationary source of carbon dioxide and other greenhouse gases that trigger global warming.

Morrisey said EPA rules on greenhouse gas emissions "are another example of the federal agency overstepping its role to the detriment of West Virginians."

Tomblin said he also wrote to President Barack Obama last month urging him to direct the EPA to halt its "anti-coal" policies.

"The EPA's proposed limits on greenhouse gas emissions threaten the livelihood of our coal miners to the point of killing jobs and crippling our state and national economies, while also weakening our country's efforts toward energy independence," Tomblin said.