— The Erimtan Angle —

 

‘The Obama administration rolled out a plan Monday to cut carbon dioxide emissions from power plants by 30 percent by 2030, setting in motion one of the most significant actions on global warming in U.S. history. (2 June 2014)’.

The news agency Reuter’s Valerie Volcovici and Jeff Mason explain that the “U.S. power sector must cut carbon dioxide emissions 30 percent by 2030 from 2005 levels, according to federal regulations unveiled on [2 June 2014] that form the centerpiece of the Obama administration’s climate change strategy. The Environmental Protection Agency’s proposal is one of the most significant environmental rules proposed by the United States, and could transform the power sector, which relies on coal for nearly 38 percent of electricity. Gina McCarthy, administrator of the Environmental Protection Agency, said on [2 June 2014] that between 2020 and 2030, the U.S. amount of carbon dioxide the proposal would reduce under the plan would be more than double the carbon pollution from the entire power sector in 2012. States will have flexible means to achieve ambitious but attainable targets, regardless of their current energy mixes. States which rely heavily on coal-fired power plants are thought to have the toughest tasks ahead”.[1]

In 2010, the U.S. stilll “produce[d] half of its energy using coal power plants. The plants are responsible for more than 80 percent of the CO2 emissions of the electricity branch. And according to forecasts by the Department of Energy, their share in energy production will in fact slightly increase by 2030”, as reported by the Deutsche Welle on 23 November 2010.[2] Now, Gina McCarthy confidently discloses that the “flexibility of our Clean Power Plan affords states the choices that lead them to a healthier future. Choices that level the playing field, and keep options on the table, not off”.[3] The EPA Press office released this statement: “At the direction of President Obama and after an unprecedented outreach effort, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency is today [on 2 June 2014] releasing the Clean Power Plan proposal, which for the first time cuts carbon pollution from existing power plants, the single largest source of carbon pollution in the United States. Today’s proposal will protect public health, move the United States toward a cleaner environment and fight climate change while supplying Americans with reliable and affordable power . . . Power plants account for roughly one-third of all domestic greenhouse gas emissions in the United States. While there are limits in place for the level of arsenic, mercury, sulfur dioxide, nitrogen oxides, and particle pollution that power plants can emit, there are currently no national limits on carbon pollution levels. With the Clean Power Plan, [the] EPA is proposing guidelines that build on trends already underway in states and the power sector to cut carbon pollution from existing power plants, making them more efficient and less polluting. This proposal follows through on the common-sense steps laid out in President Obama’s Climate Action Plan and the June 2013 Presidential Memorandum”.[4]

The press release continues that the “EPA determined that greenhouse gas pollution threatens Americans’ health and welfare [in 2009] by leading to long lasting changes in our climate that can have a range of negative effects on human health and the environment. Taking steady, responsible steps to cut carbon pollution from existing power plants will protect children’s health and will move our nation toward a cleaner, more stable environment for future generations, while supplying the reliable, affordable power needed for economic growth”.[5]

 

[1] Valerie Volcovici and Jeff Mason, “U.S. unveils sweeping plan to slash power plant pollution” Reuters (02 June 2014). http://www.reuters.com/article/2014/06/02/us-usa-climatechange-epa-idUSKBN0ED0U020140602.

[2] Cfr. “Coal in the USA” A Pseudo-Ottoman Blog (24 Nov 2010). https://sitanbul.wordpress.com/2010/11/24/coal-in-the-usa/.

[3] Valerie Volcovici and Jeff Mason, “U.S. unveils sweeping plan to slash power plant pollution”.

[4] “EPA Proposes First Guidelines to Cut Carbon Pollution from Existing Power Plants/Clean Power Plan is flexible proposal to ensure a healthier environment, spur innovation and strengthen the economy” EPA (02 June 2014). http://yosemite.epa.gov/opa/admpress.nsf/bd4379a92ceceeac8525735900400c27/5bb6d20668b9a18485257ceb00490c98!OpenDocument.

[v]5 “EPA Proposes First Guidelines to Cut Carbon Pollution from Existing Power Plants/Clean Power Plan”.

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