The Clean Power Plan, a new federal blueprint to reduce power plant emissions, was introduced by President Barack Obama and the EPA on August 3. The goal of the plan is to attempt to slow down global warming by significantly changing the way Americans obtain and use electricity.
President Obama claims the plan, which imposes the highest limits yet on carbon dioxide emissions, is the biggest step that was ever taken by the U.S. when it comes to climate change. Some states are hit harder than the others by the revised restrictions. In some cases the change is more than double the previous proposed plan.
Montana fared among the worst, as it will now be required to cut emissions by 47 percent compared 21 percent in the last version. Texas and New Hampshire for now have a reprieve with a reduced rate in this version of the plan. Only three states came out unscathed: Alaska, Hawaii, and Vermont.
Strong Opposition from the States
It didn’t take long after Obama introduced the plan for the threats of legal actions to start arriving from the affected States. The outrage is so prevalent that officials in several states are working with business leaders from energy corporations such as Murray Energy Corp. vowing to fight the rule forcefully, referring to it as an outrageous overreach by the federal government.
Problem for the Successor
Whether the plan will ever be actually implemented is another matter as Obama will no longer be in office when the majority of the new rules come into effect. Considering that states have seven years to start complying with the requirements, it will be on Obama’s successor or their successor, to either keep implementing it, as Hillary Clinton has said she would do, or reverse it, as Republican candidates have already vowed to do. At present, it seems more like a pipedream than a reality.