Policy

White House Photo

Obama, opponents square off over power plant rule

Battle lines quickly formed on Monday in response to President Barack Obama's first-ever proposal to slash greenhouse gas emissions from U.S. power plants, one he said would mean "a better future for America," but critics said would raise energy costs.

The rule would set individual state carbon emissions targets, which would yield a cumulative national cut of 30 percent by 2030 compared to 2005 levels, with an interim reduction by 2020 of about 25 percent. Obama defended the sweeping proposal in a conference call with health groups, calling it a "sensible, state-based plan" to address the health and environmental effects of global warming, even as opponents promised resistance in Congress and on the campaign trail.

France hosts dueling dinners for Obama, Putin

PARIS (AP) — French President Francois Hollande certainly won't go hungry this Thursday night. He's dining twice — first with U.S. President Barack Obama, then with Russian President Vladimir Putin.

It will be a digestive and logistical challenge, but the safest diplomatic solution for the French president to keep apart two leaders who are at odds.

EPA Photo

Analysis: Decoding McCarthy

To fully understand Gina McCarthy's announcement Monday about the Environmental Protection Agency's proposed new rule limiting carbon emissions from existing power plants, you have to appreciate that she was speaking to several audiences at the same time. There was something for each in her speech. 

Among her audiences were Democratic lawmakers thought to be vulnerable in the mid-term elections; the courts, which will hold the ultimate power of decision on whether the new rule stands; environmentalists; and the general public.

Brookings forum, "The Economic Consequences of Delays in US Climate Policy"

Washington, June 3, 2014, 1:30 pm

Brookings Institution forum, "The Economic Consequences of Delays in US Climate Policy." Expert speakers. 

Associated Press

EPA sets 30 percent power plant carbon cut by 2030

The Environmental Protection Agency on Monday proposed cutting greenhouse gas emissions from existing power plants by 30 percent by 2030.

The target, the agency said, would be based against 2005 emissions. EPA projected that coal-fired electricity will drop under the plan to about 30 percent of the nation's electricity supply by that year, down from about 37 percent in 2012.

In excerpts of a speech she was to give today, EPA Administrator Gina McCarthy said the standard will set allowable carbon per megawatt-hour generated.

She stressed that states will have the flexibility to comply with the rule, and contended that electicity will remain "affordable and reliable."

EPA seeks 30 pct carbon cut on 1st national emission limits

WASHINGTON (AP) — The Environmental Protection Agency on Monday will roll out a plan to cut carbon dioxide emissions from power plants by 30 percent by 2030, setting the first national limits on the chief gas linked to global warming.

The rule, which is expected to be final next year, is a centerpiece of President Barack Obama's plans to reduce the pollution linked to global warming, a step that the administration hopes will get other countries to act when negotiations on a new international treaty resume next year.

Oil companies: Their renewed Alaska investments contingent on current tax policy

Source: 
Houston Chronicle

If voters in Alaska decide to dismantle the state’s current oil tax policy in a referendum they risk losing resurgent investment, major oil companies say, according to the Houston Chronicle.

Democrats in key Senate races stand against some Obama admin. energy policies

Source: 
The Washington Post

Democrats are not entirely united behind Obama administration energy policies like the rule being unveiled Monday to limit power plant carbon emissions, with opposition coming from some of those running in key senate races this fall, The Washington Post reports.

Ethical investing growing in popularity: US SIF

Source: 
The New York Times

Investment funds that are about more than money – taking into account environmental and social criteria as well as corporate governance standards – increased net assets by a factor of five in the five years between 2007 and 2012, according to the U.S. Forum for Sustainable and Responsible Investment, The New York Times reports.

UN climate chief hails US power plant plan

BERLIN (AP) — The United Nations' top climate change official is hailing a planned new U.S. regulation to limit pollution blamed for global warming from power plants and says she expects it to spur other countries into action.

The Obama administration plans to announce the rule Monday, tapping the president's executive powers to tackle carbon dioxide emissions from power plants.

U.N. climate chief Christiana Figueres said in a statement Sunday the decision "will send a good signal to nations everywhere that one of the world's biggest emitters is taking the future of the planet and its people seriously." She said it's also a hopeful sign for negotiations to secure a new global climate agreement next year.

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