New EPA Rule: A National Energy Plan - The Minute

New EPA Rule: A National Energy Plan - The Minute

Multimedia from this Release

Monday, June 2, 2014 - 4:50pm


CONTENT: Multimedia with summary

Critics of U.S. energy practices have long complained about the lack of a comprehensive national energy policy. Over the past few years, the Obama administration has put forth an “all of the above” plan, which includes nuclear, although no new nuclear plants are being built; “clean coal,” an energy source with a doubtful definition; and natural gas, sidestepping the controversy over fracking. Now, with the new, proposed EPA regulation to cut carbon pollution from the nation’s power plants by 30 percent from 2005 levels by 2030, we may have the nearest thing we’ll get to that missing-in-action national energy policy.

The Clean Power Plan will be a flexible policy, according to the EPA. Under the proposed rule, states will be given choices to achieve the mandated pollution cuts. Utilities can reduce emissions by making changes across their electricity systems, by ramping up their wind and solar generation, and by installing more energy-efficient technology. States can also start or join state and regional cap and trade programs, in which they agree to cap their polluting emissions, and buy and sell permits to pollute at lower levels.

Such an approach should support states that are making progress in different ways, for example Texas leads in wind energy, and California in solar power. Besides healthier air and a boost to tech innovation in the renewable energy sector, there is a bottom line that should appeal to all states: an estimated $50 to $80 billion dollars in economic benefits, and a projected eight percent decrease in electricity costs.

I’m John Howell for 3BL Media.

Video Source: New EPA Rule: A National Energy Plan