Gov. Malloy, Attorney General Jepsen, Commissioner Klee
Statements on EPA Rule on Pollution from Power Plants
Connecticut Demonstrates Reducing Carbon Pollution Can Be Achieved
While Creating Jobs and Building Clean Energy Economy of the Future
Governor Dannel P. Malloy, Attorney General George Jepsen, and Commissioner Robert Klee of Connecticut’s Department of Energy and Environmental Protection, released the following statements today regarding the release of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) Clean Power Plan – which will regulate carbon pollution from existing electric power plants.
The EPA was required to issue this rule under the Clean Air Act and as a result of the 2006 decision by the United States Supreme Court in Massachusetts et al v. Environmental Protection Agency in which twelve states, including Connecticut, and several cities, brought suit against the EPA to force that federal agency to regulate carbon dioxide and other greenhouse gases as pollutants.
said, “This is about our future. The action we take now will endure for generations to come. I commend President Obama and EPA Administrator Gina McCarthy for their ongoing commitment to address climate change and for the Clean Power Plan released today. In Connecticut, we have already implemented
a forward-thinking vision, reducing carbon pollution by more than 10 percent from 1990 levels. The air we breathe is cleaner than it has been in decades as we build an advanced energy economy that delivers good-paying jobs. And we’re continuing to move forward with an aggressive, ambitious goal to reduce carbon emissions by 80 percent below 2001 levels by 2050. We’re becoming a national leader on these issues because the steps we take today will build a better Connecticut tomorrow.”
Attorney General Jepsen said, “While my office is still reviewing the plan, I applaud President Obama and the EPA for honoring their pledge to reduce carbon emissions over the next several years. The State of Connecticut has consistently demonstrated a commitment to clean air, reduced emissions and the development of alternative energy sources, and this plan will play an essential role in continued efforts to protect our environment and public health, safety, and welfare.
“It is appropriate and critical that the EPA exercise its legal authority and satisfy its obligation to regulate. Such regulation will complement the contributions of the existing Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative in promoting improved air quality and reducing health risks to our residents.
“The new rules set reasonable limits on emissions of climate change pollution from new and existing power plants and are firmly grounded in law. My office stands ready to support and assist the EPA throughout the implementation of the plan, including in any legal challenges that may be filed in the courts.”
Commissioner Klee said, “At DEEP, we are launching a detailed review of EPA’s Clean Power Plan to develop the compliance plan that will be required of all states. From all we know about the plan, we are confident we will receive credit for strong steps we have already taken to reduce emissions – and that we can comply with it in a manner that protects ratepayers and continues to build our economy for a sustainable and prosperous future.
“Connecticut’s progress to date is the result of several initiatives. Our participation with eight neighboring states in the Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative (RGGI) serves as a flexible, market-based solution other states should be able to replicate or adopt under the EPA rule to cut carbon emissions from power plants in a positive way. As a result of the RGGI program, carbon emissions from power plants in Connecticut have declined 34 percent from 1990 to 2012, $137 million has been generated for energy efficiency and renewable energy programs, and new jobs have been added to our economy.”
The Commissioner added, “Our state has also taken strong steps to reduce the demand for power from conventional fuels – another path the EPA rule suggests – by focusing on energy savings and deployment of renewable energy projects. We have doubled funding for popular and cost effective energy savings programs – and the lifetime energy savings achieved from projects funded in 2014 alone will avoid carbon emissions of more than 3.2 million tons. In addition, we have increased by 10-fold the in-state generation of power from renewable sources, entered into the first regional grid-scale power procurement contracts, expanded the state’s infrastructure to support electric vehicles, and joined with other states to encourage consumers to switch to zero-emission vehicles.”
Office of the Governor:
Office of the Attorney General:
Jaclyn M. Falkowski
Department of Energy & Environmental Protection: