EPA announces plan to reduce power plant carbon emissions

Cutting pollution while establishing a greater presence of clean energy sources.

That’s the goal of the new energy proposal released by the EPA earlier today. The Clean Power Plan is aimed at reducing power plants’ carbon emissions by 30% by 2030.

The proposal is part of President Obama’s Climate Action Plan and comes on the heels of several scientists announcing that climate change is no longer a thing of the future.

President Obama said, “Earlier this month (May) scientists declared that climate change is no longer a distant threat; it has moved firmly into the present. Its cost can be measured in lost lives and livelihoods; lost homes and businesses; and higher prices for food, insurance and rebuilding.”

“Coal, natural gas, hyrdo power, nuclear, wind and solar: all of these supply the electricity that we use every day in our homes and businesses,” Joe Goffman, Assistant Administrator for Climate with the EPA, said, “but when fossil fuels like coal are burned to produce electricity, they release carbon dioxide, trapping heat in the atmosphere and leading to climate change.”

The inexpensive alternative the EPA is turning to in order to cut down on these emissions involves a combination of solar and wind power. The use of both sources has increased exponentially over the past couple of years.

Even so, not all states would be subject to the same standards of implementation.

“It gives states the flexibility to chart their own customized path. There is no one size fits all solution; each state is different so each state’s path can be different,” said Gina McCarthy, and EPA Administrator.

We Energies’ officials said it’s too early to tell how it will affect their power plants. They say it’s important to note that there are currently no commercially available means to capture carbon from coal plants.

The Marquette Board of Light and Power said the new EPA rules will allow them to continue offering low cost reliable service with a greater degree of certainty.

The plan is expected to save Americans $13 billion in energy costs and create almost 275,000 jobs.