Please submit your comment in favor of the carbon pollution limits TODAY by clicking HERE to send EPA your support.
John Rowe, CEO of Exelon: “The EPA is simply enforcing the requirements of the existing Clean Air Act as the Act has been interpreted by the courts, including the Supreme Court.”
By Jorge Madrid and Celine Ramstein
For the first time in history, the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) proposed to limit the carbon dioxide pollution from new power plants. This will slow the growth of the major pollutant responsible for global climate change, which threatens the health and safety of Americans. This new standard will have far-reaching public health impacts and finally put a limit on emissions from the single largest carbon pollution source in America: burning coal for electricity.
The Carbon Pollution Standard directs new power plants that begin construction after the rule is finalized should “meet an output‐based standard of 1,000 pounds of CO2 per megawatt‐hour.” The typical new coal fired power plant would have to reduce their carbon pollution by 40 to 60 percent. Natural gas power plants should be able to comply with this standard without additional controls.
The proposal was published in the Federal Register today. Now an official comment period begins for the next 60 days in which the public is invited to submit comments to the EPA on this proposed rule. EPA will probably conduct several public meetings in various major cities, too.
This historic proposal comes at a critical juncture, as Nobel Laureate and Energy Secretary Steven Chu recently reminded us the scientific evidence of climate change is getting more and more powerful, and that the pace of some effects have been underestimated: “[sea level] is rising even faster than we thought…the numbers of violent rainstorms have increased faster than we thought.”
The new rule also offers a real chance to protect children and public health, which is why over 120 health organizations including the American Academy of Pediatrics, American Lung Association, American Medical Association, American Nurses Association, American Public Health Association, American Thoracic Society and others are on record stating:
Climate change is a serious public health issue. As temperatures rise, more Americans will be exposed to conditions that can result in illness and death due to respiratory illness, heat- and weather-related stress and disease carried by insects. These health issues are likely to have the greatest impact on our most vulnerable communities, including children, older adults, those with serious health conditions and the most economically disadvantaged.