A former U.S. EPA official is asking Mississippi lawmakers to defy the agency’s Clean Power Plan, saying the results could be fatal if they do not.

David Schnare, a former EPA regulator and noted climate change skeptic, appeared yesterday before a joint legislative committee in the state Legislature asking that the lawmakers pass bills that would prevent Mississippi from complying with the plan, which would require the state to reduce its carbon dioxide emissions by 40 percent by 2030.

Schnare claimed that if the state complies with the federal rule, it could force electricity rate hikes so high that as many as 600 Mississippians would die because they would have to forgo medical care in order to afford their utility bills.

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