Delaware joins governments objecting to scrapping Clean Power Plan

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Delaware Attorney General Matt Denn,says Delaware has joined 26 states, counties, and cities that have formally objected to the Environmental Protection Agency’s plan to reverse the Clean Power Plan.

The Clean Power Plan, put in place by the EPA under President Obama, is the first nationwide limit on climate change pollution from existing fossil-fueled power plans.

According to a release from Denn, the Clean Power Plan is the culmination of a decade-long effort by partnering states and cities to require mandatory cuts in the emissions of climate change pollution from fossil fuel-burning power plants under the Clean Air Act

The coalition of states and municipalities cite“the overwhelming scientific evidence of human-induced climate change and its increasing impacts, and the corresponding need for the EPA to perform its duty under the Clean Air Act to set nationwide limits on power plant emissions of climate change pollution.”

“The replacement rule proposed by President Trump’s EPA turns its back on the success of Delaware and other states in reducing carbon pollution from power plants, and instead will uncork the power plants’ smokestacks and let them put more pollution in our air,” Denn said. He claimed the proposed rule contains factual inaccuracies, analytical errors, and legal flaws, and would be unlawful if adopted.

“The EPA’s own analysis predicts that, compared to the Clean Power Plan, the so-called Affordable Clean Energy Rule could result in over 60 million tons of pollution,” Denn stated.

The comments were spearheaded by the attorney general of New York submitted on behalf of the attorneys general from Delaware California, Connecticut, Illinois, Iowa, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, Minnesota (by and through its Minnesota Pollution Control Agency), New Mexico, North Carolina, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, Vermont, Virginia, Washington, and the District of Columbia, as well as the cities of Boulder (CO), Chicago, Los Angeles, New York, Philadelphia, and South Miami (FL), and Broward County (FL).

The Trump Administration has claimed the Obama-era rules are too expensive and could create an electric supply crisis in coming years as coal and nuclear power plants are shut down.

Critics in Delaware, including the conservative Caesar Rodney Institute, claim Delaware’s restrictions have driven up electricity costs and hurt manufacturing.

President Trump has been calling for a comeback for coal, which is losing ground to natural gas, especially when costly emissions controls are added to power plants.

Delaware now has only one coal-fired unit in Sussex County at the Indian River NRG plant. Owners have installed pollution control equipment at a cost of tens of millions of dollars.

Coal units have been retired in Edgemoor, Dover and IndianRiver in the past couple of decades.

PJM, the region’s electric grid manager, sees no crisis in the immediate future.

Delaware has also been at odds with the Trump Administration over downwind pollution from dirtier coal-fired power plants elsewhere in the region.

Trump backers say pollution from Interstate 95, not wind-borne pollution, is a bigger factor.

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