Coal Plants

Reform Movement Hails Clean Power Plan



Yesterday, the Environmental Protection Agency released its final rule for the Clean Power Plan, which requires states to significantly reduce carbon emissions through regulating coal power plants along with other mitigation strategies. The plan is expected to cut carbon emissions in the United States by up to 30%, making it a significant move to mitigate climate change in parallel with other greenhouse gas emission reduction strategies like regulating heavy duty vehicles and limiting methane. The rule is likely to shift conversations in some states from coal and other non-renewable fossil fuel resources to clean, renewable energy like wind and solar power. In announcing this historic rule, President Obama said: “Climate change is no longer just about the future that we’re predicting for our children or our grandchildren; it’s about the reality that we’re living with every day, right now.”

In response to this announcement by President Obama and the Environmental Protection Agency, Rabbi Jonah Dov Pesner, Director of the Religious Action Center, issued the following statement:

“Today’s Clean Power Plan announced by President Obama is a landmark step in the fight against global climate change. The final rule will position the United States as a global leader in energy efficiency. In creating the first ever national standard for power plants, the rule will ensure that power plants reduce carbon pollution, soot, and other air pollutants that effect our health and contribute significantly to climate change. The Clean Power Plan, crafted to allow the greatest possible flexibility for individual states, will be implemented according to state-specific needs across the country.  

As sea levels and global temperatures rise, and as global crop viability and water access decrease, the need for bold action to address climate change becomes ever more clear and urgent. As a Movement, we believe that it is our responsibility to act as environmental stewards and partners with God in tilling and tending the earth, as humankind was commanded in the Garden of Eden (Genesis 2:15). The Reform Movement has long advocated for the Clean Power Plan through testimony and hundreds of comments from our clergy and lay people across the United States. This rule is just one of many ways that states, in coordination with the Environmental Protection Agency, can complete the sacred work of safeguarding both our earth’s natural resources and communities impacted by our changing climate.”

Check out this article in Vox about how the Clean Power Plan will actually work and <a href=”http://www.theguardian.com/environment/2015/aug/03/obamas-clean-power-plan-hailed-as-strongest-ever-climate-action-by-a-us

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Liya Rechtman

About Liya Rechtman

Liya Rechtman is a legislative assistant from Brooklyn, New York, where she is a member of Brooklyn Heights Synagogue. Liya graduated from Amherst College.

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