Established in 2015, the Clean Power Plan (CPP) provides the first-ever national limits on carbon pollution from power plants, and aims to reduce emissions to 32% below 2005 levels by 2030. The Clean Power Plan has the potential to develop a clean energy economy, create new jobs, and reduce health risks from carbon pollution.
Under the CPP, each state received different emissions reduction targets and were tasked with creating an implementation plan to reach those targets. In October 2017, Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) Administrator Scott Pruitt announced his intention to rescind the CPP. Before the rule can be rescinded however, it must go through a public comment period.
Urge the EPA not to rescind the Clean Power Plan. The CPP brings critical health benefits for low income Americans and Americans of color, and is an important step to combatting climate change.
As part of President Obama’s Climate Action Plan, the EPA proposed new carbon pollution standards for power plants under the Clean Air Act. While the final rule for the Clean Power Plan was issued in August 2015, it was never fully implemented as it was held up in the courts.
On March 28, 2017, President Trump signed an executive order calling for a review and rewrite of the Clean Power Plan. On October 9, 2017 Scott Pruitt announced the EPA’s intention to rescind the rule that established the CPP.
Repealing the CPP has significant public health impacts. The CPP was estimated to stop 3,600 premature deaths, 1,700 heart attacks, 90,000 asthma attacks and 300,000 missed days of work or school every year by winding down power generation from coal-fired plants, which are built disproportionality in poor neighborhoods and communities of color.
The CPP is also a critical component in how the U.S. planned to achieve its goals set out in the Paris Agreement. The CPP reduces emissions to 32% below 2005 levels by 2030, a critical step in ensuring we limit the warming of our planet. We know our current carbon emissions put us on track for disastrous warming which would destroy countless species and threaten human life.
Because of Massachusetts v EPA, the EPA is obligated to regulate CO2 and recently proposed a replacement for the CPP. The proposed replacement program would require power plants to take steps to be slightly more efficient, but would not help transition power generation away from high carbon energy sources as the CPP does.
It is imperative we make our voices heard loud and clear and demand the EPA keep the CPP and protect our planet. Submit a public comment to the federal register in favor of keeping the CPP. While we have pre-filled some suggested language for you, we encourage you to edit and personalize your message to increase the impact of your comment. Comments will be accepted through April 26, 2018.
Jewish tradition teaches, “Do not destroy my world, for if you do, there will be nobody after you to make it right again” (Midrash Ecclesiastes Rabbah 7:13). Not only will our actions impact future generations, determining if they will have the same access to environmental resources as we do, but they impact our daily lives. The Reform Movement has long advocated for policies to reduce the severity of climate change, including the Clean Power Plan.