How Trump's rules on coal-fired power plants differ from Obama's

Essen Germany

Wikipedia Coal may be indestructible but its infrastructure isn't. Witness Essen 1943/CC BY 2.0

By contrast, the Obama administration projected that its rule would have cut emissions 19% over the same time frame.

Klee said CT also has challenged other states for "not being good neighbors" when it comes to regulating air emissions. The rule dictated specific emission targets for states based on power-plant emissions and gave officials broad latitude to decide how to achieve reductions.

"Truth and common sense will triumph over Trump's insanity".

In Connecticut, where only one coal-fired plant is left, Department of Energy and Environmental Protection Commissioner Rob Klee called it "mind-boggling" that the administration would take steps to protect a "dying technology" over the health of citizens.

"There is nothing clean or affordable about this rule", said Carter Roberts, president and CEO of the World Wildlife Fund, an advocacy group, in a statement.

Coal fired power plants have always been a staple of the US power grid, but are declining due to competition from natural gas, which is cheaper, and wind and solar power, which are far more agreeable to the environment and human health.

Unlike the Pruitt-Wheeler rollback, the Clean Power Plan provided a constructive and necessary framework for the U.S.to continue reducing carbon pollution, growing our clean energy economy, and protecting public health.

"What we're dealing with here are greenhouse gases", Wehrum said. Earlier this month, the administration announced a change to vehicle emissions standards that will allow them to emit more.

The Obama administration had worked to nudge the country's power producers to natural gas, wind and solar power, and other less-polluting power sources.

Quickly, though, Obama's plan faced a legal challenge, on the grounds that the Environmental Protection Agency didn't have the authority to make such a far-reaching rule.

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"There's been a culling in the market in OH, just because of market forces", Butler said. If Democrats or environmental groups sue the Trump administration, a court could rule in favor of the Trump administration and cement his approach to the law.

The fights that have taken place over the Clean Air Act may be mirrored by legal battles over the new Affordable Clean Energy proposal.

The White House claimed it would also save $6.4 billion in compliance costs for industry, compared to the Obama plan.

"This proposal would also result in more pollution from nitrogen oxide, sulfur dioxide, mercury and other harmful pollutants". Up to 1,400 of them a year, in fact, by 2030.

According to the EPA, ACE is expected to increase coal production anywhere from 4.5 to 5.8 percent and decrease costs for consumers up to 0.5 percent.

About 40 percent of the nation's coal fleet has either been retired or slated for retirement since 2010, according to the American Coalition for Clean Coal Electricity. We speak with Mary Anne Hitt, director of the Sierra Club Beyond Coal Campaign.

Electric utilities with coal generation are encouraged by the EPA's proposal. Cheap natural gas has been largely responsible for shuttering hundreds of coal plants in the U.S. The falling price of renewables has only further loosened coal's grip on the power sector. Although he added, "Nothing lasts forever". Yet documents released on Tuesday showed the EPA estimated carbon dioxide emissions would be higher than under the Obama policy, while pollution-related premature deaths, hospital admissions, asthma cases and school absence days could be higher by 2030.

The rule would replace the 2015 Clean Power Plan, which was stayed by the U.S. Supreme Court and has never gone into effect.

This article was originally published by The Washington Post.

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