The Trump administration is rolling back Obama-era rules on climate change regulation limiting carbon dioxide emissions from coal power plants in the United States, making it easier to build new ones.
The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) plan, announced Thursday, would no longer mandate that plants meet the strict emissions goals of achieving emissions equal to or less than what plants would have achieved with carbon capture and storage (CCS) technology.
Under the proposed revisions to the New Source Performance Standards (NSPS), EPA would let new coal plants emit up to 1,900 pounds (862 kg) of carbon dioxide per megawatt-hour of electricity. The rule would replace the Obama-era standard allowing only 1,400 pounds of carbon per megawatt-hour.
EPA Assistant Administrator for the Office of Air and Radiation Bill Wehrum called the old rule “wishful thinking.” “Today’s actions reflect our approach of defining new, clean coal standards by data and the latest technological information, not wishful thinking,” he said in a statement.
“U.S. coal-fired power will be a part of our energy future and our revised standards will ensure that the emissions profiles of new plants continue to improve.”
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