Published: Wed, August 22, 2018
Sci-tech | By Bennie Mills

Trump to relax carbon limits on power plants to support USA coal

Trump to relax carbon limits on power plants to support USA coal

But documents released by the EPA together with the proposed rule say that implementing it is expected to "increase the level of emissions of certain pollutants in the atmosphere that adversely affect human health".

On Tuesday, the Environmental Protection Agency released the details of President Trump's replacement for his predecessor's Clear Power Plan, and along with it, Trump's EPA also released its analysis of the effects of the new Affordable Clean Energy rule.

"The entire Obama administration plan was centered around doing away with coal", Wheeler told the Journal in an interview.

Obama took a broad view with his "Clean Power Plan", a two-part program that created emissions targets for every state, and then allowed the states to meet those targets in whatever manner they thought best (increasing use of clean energy, new regulations, a carbon tax, a cap-and-trade system).

In terms of the public health impacts, that's where you are certainly going to see a difference, because one thing that the Trump administration is now proposing is that utilities that want to make their existing coal-fired plants more efficient can make those upgrades without installing the kind of pollution controls on traditional pollutants that normally are required under the Clean Air Act.

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The Dave Johnson coal-fired power plant is silhouetted against the morning sun in Glenrock, Wyoming.

John Barrasso from the coal state of Wyoming welcomed the overhaul of the Obama administration's 2015 regulations, called the Clean Power Plan.

In many states, the CPP's limits on emissions have already been met because the cost of generating power from natural gas and renewable energy like wind and solar is cheaper than coal. "Climate change is real", McCarthy said in a statement. The long lead time gives the company plenty of room to execute its plan even in the coal-dominated state of Alabama, where its Alabama Power Co. unit holds significant political sway.

The EPA's proposal is open for a public comment period, with a final rule expected later this year.

"The announcement of a replacement rule may largely represent a political milestone for a president who promised to end his predecessor's 'war on coal, ' but we also view it as a significant policy action that could to make it hard for a differently oriented successor to establish greenhouse gas limits on any stationary sector via executive discretion", ClearView Energy Partners managing director Kevin Book said in a research note to clients.

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Combined with the EPA's proposal earlier this month to ease mileage requirements for vehicles, the move could increase the country's climate-changing emissions, according to some former top EPA officials, environmental groups, and other opponents.

The disparate treatment reflects the double standard toward climate-change policy in the media.

Trump has already vowed to pull the USA out of the Paris climate agreement as he pushes to revive the coal industry. More CO2 emissions means more of the other harmful stuff.

The implementation of those rules were halted by the Supreme Court in 2016, to give the courts time to consider the arguments over whether the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) had exceeded its legal authority. "We have ended the war on coal, and will continue to work to promote American energy dominance!" he tweeted in May. California does not get any of its electricity from coal.

"We agree with those policymakers who have become increasingly concerned that coal retirements are a threat to grid resilience and national security", she said.

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