The Clean Power Plan

Our experts and analysts weigh in on the Clean Power Plan, with a particular focus on the strong role that renewable energy and energy efficiency can play in reducing carbon emissions.


Momentum on the path to our clean energy future. Credit: Dennis Schroeder, DOE/NREL

The Clean Power Plan Has Already Accomplished One of Its Most Important Tasks

, Energy analyst

Tuesday’s attack on the Clean Power Plan (CPP) did not exactly come as a surprise. Since the day President Trump was elected, the rule’s fate has seemed near-well sealed—when CPP lawsuit ringleader Scott Pruitt was confirmed as EPA administrator, all lingering doubts were reduced to specifics about how and when. Well here we are, and now we know.

But here’s the thing. Though the administration spoke of “relieving the burden” of the rule, and though there had been much braying when the CPP was first announced, there has been a conspicuous absence of utilities leaping to change course after the lifting of the (supposed) crushing yoke of the CPP. Today, in fact, most utilities seem much as they did yesterday: increasingly comfortable with, and confident in, the idea of serving electricity in a carbon-constrained world. Read more >

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President Trump’s All-Out Attack on Climate Policy

, lead economist and climate policy manager

We’ve known for some time that something like this was in the works. Yet that doesn’t take away from the shock of the destructive details. Read more >

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The Fate of the Clean Power Plan under President Trump

, director of Climate & Energy

Shortly, we are likely to see and hear much more about what jurists, Congress, and the new Administration think about the Clean Power Plan, the cornerstone of our nation’s efforts to reduce carbon emissions. Regardless of how the court rules—and how Congress and President Trump respond—there’s no denying the reality of climate change or the many compelling reasons to double down on the clean energy transition already underway.

Imposing limits on carbon pollution would help the President deliver on two campaign promises—to create jobs and protect clean air. Read more >

Erika Bolstad
Ecowatch
Union of Concerned Scientists
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The First Three Reasons Senators Should Oppose Scott Pruitt for EPA

, director of Climate & Energy

President-elect Trump has promised to return the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to its original mission to deliver clean air and ‘crystal clear’ water.  The EPA was established by President Nixon in 1970 because “Our national government today is not structured to make a coordinated attack on the pollutants which debase the air we breathe, the water we drink, and the land that grows our food.” Those pollutants primarily come from the burning of fossil fuels in cars, trucks, and industrial sources like power plants and refineries.  We need an EPA Administrator that will take us forward, to tackle the pollution challenges of today, and not take us back by weakening existing standards. Read more >

Photos by Leroy Woodson and Frank Aleksandrowicz, NARA
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Installing solar panels in PA

The Clean Power Plan’s Clean Energy Incentive Program

, lead economist and climate policy manager

Today is the comment deadline for the Clean Energy Incentive Program (CEIP), a voluntary component of the Clean Power Plan. The program encourages early investments in renewable energy and targeted investments in efficiency and renewables in low-income communities. In our comments, we urge every state to join the program and take advantage of the CEIP’s incentives, and also offer the EPA some recommendations to help improve it. Read more >

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