The White House is rolling out the nation’s first-ever national standards to limit carbon pollution from power plants.
The new regulations require plants to cut their carbon dioxide emissions from 2005 levels, so they’ll be down by almost a third by the year 2030.
On the losing side of the new rules: coal. The coal industry and coal-producing states have already filed lawsuits, and more are expected.
“It would not shock me if lawsuits get filed by the end of the day,” says Ethan Zindler, an analyst with Bloomberg New Energy Finance. “There’s that much violent opposition to this.”
Natural gas appears to be losing some ground in the new rules, too. It may be falling out of favor because of concerns that methane leaks out when natural gas is pumped out of the ground, moved and stored.
“Methane is a greenhouse gas and is much more potent than CO2,” says Rachel Cleetus, lead economist and climate policy manager at the Union of Concerned Scientists.
In a last-minute surprise, the winner in today’s new regulations appears to be renewable energy — solar or wind power. The White House wants 30 percent more renewable energy generation by 2030.
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