Trump EPA coal rule roll­back

The Norwalk Hour - - OBITUARIES/NEWS -

En­vi­ron­men­tal Pro­tec­tion Agency pro­posed an­other roll­back Thurs­day aimed at eas­ing con­trols on emis­sions from coal-fired power plants, this time for new ones, even as warn­ings mount from the agency’s sci­en­tists and oth­ers about the grow­ing toll of cli­mate change.

The EPA’s act­ing ad­min­is­tra­tor signed a pro­posal that, if ap­proved by the Trump ad­min­is­tra­tion af­ter pub­lic re­view, would loosen an Obama-era rule that would have re­quired cut­ting-edge car­bon cap­ture tech­niques for new coal plants. An­drew Wheeler said the curbs on coal emis­sions were “ex­ces­sive bur­dens” on the in­dus­try.

En­vi­ron­men­tal­ists and sci­en­tists say this plan and other pro­posed ad­min­is­tra­tion roll­backs on pol­lu­tants from fos­sil fu­els run counter to des­per­ately needed ef­forts to slow cli­mate change.

Thurs­day’s an­nounce­ment comes two weeks af­ter a re­port by the EPA and 12 other fed­eral agen­cies warned that cli­mate change caused by burn­ing of coal, oil and gas al­ready was wors­en­ing nat­u­ral dis­as­ters in the United States, and would cause hun­dreds of bil­lions of dol­lars in dam­age each year by the end of the cen­tury.

Asked about eas­ing the way for new coal plants in the con­text of the harm from coal pol­lu­tion on hu­mans and the en­vi­ron­ment, Wheeler said “hav­ing cheap elec­tric­ity helps hu­man health.”

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