Power plant rules blocked by Senate panel; floor fight ahead

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A GOP-controlled Senate committee has approved legislation to block the Obama administration from putting in place tough new standards on greenhouse gas emissions from power plants.

The Senate Environment and Public Works Committee gave voice vote approval to send the bill to the full Senate, where a filibuster battle awaits.

A veto promise from President Barack Obama is assured.

The legislation, by Republican Sen. Shelley Moore Capito of coal mining stronghold West Virginia, would place several obstacles before the new rules can take effect. They aim to cut carbon dioxide emissions by nearly one-third by 2030, compared with 2005 levels, by boosting the generation of electricity from "clean" sources while reducing dependence on coal as a source.

The new standards face legal challenges from 15 states.