“Dirty Power Plan” would release 12 times more climate change-causing carbon pollution into air and environment than Obama Clean Power Plan


Washington (August 21, 2018) – Senator Edward J. Markey (D-Mass.), a member of the Environment and Public Works Committee and Chair of the Senate Climate Change Task Force, released the following statement after the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) issued a proposed rule to replace the Clean Power Plan, the ambitious Obama-era strategy to drastically reduce pollution from the electric utility sector and combat climate change. The power sector accounted for 28.4 percent of greenhouse gas emissions in the United States in 2016.


The proposed rule would gut the Obama administration’s plan that would have had power plants cut emissions of carbon pollution by 19 percent compared with business as usual by 2030 – the equivalent of taking 75 million cars of the road. It would reduce smog-forming pollutants by more than 22 percent.  In contrast, the Trump administration’s Dirty Power Plan proposal would cut CO2 emissions from 2005 levels only by between 0.7 percent and 1.5 percent over that time, compared with business as usual.


“The price of renewables is plummeting and clean energy jobs are increasing, while black lung cases in coal miners are resurgent,” said Senator Markey. “Yet the Trump administration, with the help of former coal lobbyist and new EPA Administrator Andrew Wheeler, is forgoing our clean energy future for the sake of giveaways to King Coal. This Dirty Power Plan is King Coal corporate welfare, propping open the doors to aging, polluting coal plants. Coal cannot compete against wind, solar and renewables in the free market. It’s not a conspiracy, it’s competition. In 2016, more jobs were created in solar than existed in the entire coal industry. 


“This Dirty Power Plan is an abdication of U.S. leadership on climate change and a betrayal of the public’s health, our environment, and the planet’s future. Unless we reduce carbon and other dangerous air pollution, the public’s health will suffer from more asthma attacks and respiratory illness. A clean energy revolution is happening across the globe, but President Trump wants to hand over countless American clean energy jobs and the development of new technologies to China, Germany, India, and other nations. America’s energy future won’t be found in the dark of a mine but in the light of the sun.”