Trump Admin Begins Rollback of Clean Power Plan

Following through on a campaign promise, the Trump administration signed a rule this week to repeal the Clean Power Plan, the first-ever national limit on carbon pollution from existing power plants. An historic public health regulation, which wasn’t scheduled to begin implementation until 2022, the Clean Power Plan was projected to save Americans $12 billion to $34 billion in health cost savings.

By setting modest carbon reduction goals and providing maximum compliance flexibility, including carbon reductions achieved through increased use of natural gas and nuclear, the Clean Power Plan established a balance of environmental and economic development goals. In fact, the rule would have provided relief in the form of utility bill savings, with an estimated $7/month savings realized by 2030 thanks to reduction in power demand thanks to increased energy efficiency.

You WON’T believe how dangerous wind turbines are…

Certainly some risk exists with wind turbines; however, the risk from wind farms appears to be less than being struck by lightning and certainly less dangerous than fossil fuels. Still, wind developers have a responsibility to ensure projects are built to meet or exceed safety standards and to benefit the local communities.

SCOTUS Nominee Merrick Garland and Environmental Regulation

Today, at a live event in the Rose Garden, President Obama nominated Merrick Garland, currently the chief judge of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit. Reminding everyone that “people don’t stop working during their last term,” President Obama urged Senators to act in a bipartisan fashion and move forward with nomination hearings in order to fill the vacant seat left on the Supreme Court after Justice Antonin Scalia passed away in February.
Although there is sure to be a political battle around the nomination, we look to Judge Garland’s record on environmental issues to shed some light on how the Supreme Court may handle future environmental cases, like the current challenge to the Clean Power Plan pending in the lower court.

Do You Breathe Air? Why You Should Care About New Ozone Standards

Do you breathe air? If you answered yes, then you should definitely care about the soon-to-be-released updated ozone regulations. If you answered no, then I’m glad to learn there really is life after death! All joking aside, the Environmental Protection Agency is under a court order to release updated ozone regulations October 1st that will further strengthen these important public health safeguards.

Climate Change and Our Health – Protecting Our Most Vulnerable Communities

Just as we march to preserve our right to vote and to ensure that our children have access to good schools and a quality education, we also march to preserve our rights to clean air, clean water and to communities less impacted by climate change. That is why I applaud President Obama’s introduction of the Clean Power Plan and it’s focus on ensuring everyone will benefit as we transition to a clean energy economy.

Climate Change is Risky for Business in the Southeast

If we continue on our current greenhouse gas emissions pathway, the Southeastern U.S. and Texas will likely experience significant drops in agricultural yield and labor productivity, along with increased sea level rise, higher energy demand, and rising mortality rates. In particular, the region’s agricultural sector will be negatively influenced by the changing climatic conditions, with several commodity crops likely to face severe yield declines. Meanwhile, residents and businesses will likely be affected by higher heat-related mortality, increased electricity demand and energy costs, and declines in labor productivity, threatening the manufacturing base that is increasingly driving the regional economy. And in some cities, such as Miami and New Orleans, sea level rise will put significant amounts of existing coastal property at risk.

Can we talk? Here’s the conversation African Americans need to have about climate change

This guest post, by Danielle Hilton and Seandra Pope, was originally published on Grist on July 8. You can see the original post here. Last year, the African-American author and commentator Charles D. Ellison asked, “Where’s the Black political conversation on climate change?” Now that conversation is happening, but it’s not the one we need. [...]

Hundreds Gather in Memphis to Discuss Environmental Justice Issues

This blog was co-authored by Sandra Upchurch, SACE’s Memphis Energy Organizer. As fall descended on Memphis, over 250 people attended the Sierra Club’s 13th Annual Grassroots Community Conference. This was the first year the conference was hosted by the University of Memphis, which joined Sierra Club and other community groups in discussing this year’s conference [...]

Kentucky Group Studies Health Effects of Aging TVA Coal Plant

This guest blog was written by Deborah Payne, MPH, Health Coordinator at the Kentucky Environmental Foundation (KEF). For more detail on KEF’s Shawnee Health Impacts Assessment, please register and attend a free webinar on November 20, 2014 at 11am ET. Download the full report here. In 1957, the price of gas was just 24 cents a gallon, [...]

North Carolina off to a great start to meet EPA’s Clean Power Plan

This is a guest post by Luis Martinez at Natural Resources Defense Council. It was originally published on NRDC’s Switchboard blog on June 5, 2014. [Last] Monday, the US Environmental Protection Agency announced their new Clean Power Standards designed to protect health and tackle climate change by reducing carbon dioxide emissions from existing power plants [...]