Oct. 9, 2017

Clean Power Plan Repeal Is a Coal Industry Giveaway

Statement of David Arkush, Managing Director, Public Citizen’s Climate Program

Note: Today, U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) Administrator Scott Pruitt told a crowd in Hazard, Ky., that on Tuesday he plans to sign a proposal that would repeal the Clean Power Plan.

President Donald Trump and U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) Administrator Scott Pruitt’s plan to repeal the Clean Power Plan shows yet again that the administration puts polluters over people, at any cost.

The EPA projects that the Clean Power Plan will lower electricity bills nationally by 7.0 to 7.7 percent. We studied the question further and found the rule would lower bills in nearly every individual state by 2025, and all states by 2030 – and by as much as 20 percent in some states. Trump and Pruitt want to pick Americans’ pockets and fork over the money to coal barons.

Despite an ever-growing list of industry giveaways from the Trump administration, this effort is shocking in its pettiness and subservience to coal companies. Just two years after the Clean Power Plan passed, we’re already nearly 80 percent of the way to meeting its goal, with 13 more years to go. The rule aims to curb carbon pollution from power plants by 32 percent over 2005 levels by 2030, and we’re already at 25 percent.

In addition to cutting electricity bills, the rule is saving thousands of lives and preventing tens of thousands of illnesses by curbing pollution from the dirtiest power plants, which means it’s also cutting health care costs. Finally, it’s mitigating climate change, which already is devastating American lives and before long will pose an existential threat to the U.S.

It’s no wonder that 70 percent of Americans, including majorities in every congressional district, support even stronger policy than the Clean Power Plan – strict limits on carbon pollution from power plants.

It is astonishing what harm Trump and Pruitt will inflict on American families just to put a few more bucks in the pockets of their coal-baron cronies.

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