EPA to begin repealing Obama's landmark climate rule Tuesday

Posted October 10, 2017

EPA Administrator Scott Pruitt says the Trump administration will abandon the Obama-era Clean Power Plan aimed at reducing global warming.

The Clean Power Plan requires states to meet specific carbon emission reduction standards based on their individual energy consumption.

"No better place to make that announcement than in Hazard, Ky".

EPA says repealing the rule will save Americans $33 billion in compliance costs.

"Regulatory power should not be used by any regulatory body to pick winners and losers".

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Pruitt's attempt is the latest in the Trump Administration's risky campaign of climate change denial, and is a wake-up call for state and local leaders: if you want to protect your citizens, it's time to take action yourselves because the Trump-Pruitt EPA has shown it's more interested in protecting polluters than the health of Americans.

The Obama administration's cost-benefits analysis of the Clean Power Plan was "highly uncertain" in multiple areas, Bowman said, vowing that the Trump administration will present a range of scenarios to the public "in a robust, open and transparent way". Pruitt, however, can probably expect a new wave of litigation from the other side of the debate, as environmentalist groups and allied Democrats are sure to challenge the rollback.

But the plan met fierce pushback from the coal industry, which issued so many legal challenges that the Supreme Court suspended the policy previous year.

"No matter who is in the White House, the EPA is legally required to limit risky carbon pollution, and the Clean Power Plan is an achievable, affordable way to do that", said Sierra Club Executive Director Michael Brune.

The EPA has not, as was widely expected, issued a revised, weaker version of the Clean Power Plan.

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When the rule was finalized in 2015, power plants were the largest source of United States climate pollution, comprising 31% of the nation's emissions.

Pruitt, a climate change denier and former Oklahoma attorney general with strong ties to his state's oil and gas industries, was one of the policy's early critics. Utilities shelved coal projects in preparation of the rule, and coal-fired facilities were scheduled to shut down because it would be virtually impossible for them to comply with the emissions mandates and remain financially viable.

Repealing the Clean Power Plan without a timeline or a commitment to propose a rule to reduce carbon pollution "isn't a step forward, it's a wholesale retreat from EPA's legal, scientific and moral obligation to address the threats of climate change, '" said former EPA Administrator Gina McCarthy.

Pruitt also added that President Trump demonstrated "tremendous courage" when he made the decision to withdraw from the Paris Climate Accord this past June.

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