November 01, 2014 01:07 UTC

As It Is

Obama Proposes Limits on Power Plant Pollution

The coal-fired Plant Scherer is shown in operation early Sunday, June 1, 2014, in Juliette, Ga. The Obama administration unveiled a plan Monday to cut carbon dioxide emissions from power plants by nearly a third over the next 15 years.
The coal-fired Plant Scherer is shown in operation early Sunday, June 1, 2014, in Juliette, Ga. The Obama administration unveiled a plan Monday to cut carbon dioxide emissions from power plants by nearly a third over the next 15 years.
Obama Proposes Limits on Power Plant Pollution
Obama Proposes Limits on Power Plant Pollutioni
|| 0:00:00
...
 
🔇
X


The Obama administration has proposed stronger rules to limit pollution from American power stations.  The proposed rules would affect production of carbon dioxide and other gases linked to rising temperatures worldwide.  The administration says the measures will help protect the nation’s health.  And it says they will put the United States in a stronger leadership position to fight climate change.  

 

President Barack Obama announced the proposed pollution rules early last week. 

“Today about 40 percent of America’s carbon pollution comes from power plants.  But right now there are no national limits to the amount of carbon pollution that existing plants can pump into the air we breathe.  None.”

 

The new Clean Power Plan is aimed at the more than 600 coal-fired power plants across the United States.  These power centers are the single largest producer of carbon pollution in the country.  

 

Gina McCarthy is head of the Environmental Protection Agency.  She said it is a moral duty to act for the good of public health.

 

“When we do, we’ll turn risks of climate into business opportunity.  We will spur innovation and investment, and we’ll build a world-leading clean energy economy.”

 

The plan would require a 30 percent reduction in climate-changing emissions from 2005 levels by the year 2030.  Ms. McCarthy says flexibility is built into how states enforce the rule.

 

“Each state is different, so each goal and each path can be different.”

 

The proposal offers a number of choices.  Kevin Kennedy directs the U.S. Climate Initiative for the World Resources Institute.

 

“The flexibility that she is talking about (is) the ability to look at the entire electricity system, so that you can look at energy efficiency.  You can look at renewables.  You can look at switching fuels from coal to natural gas, making more use of existing natural gas plants that have been sitting relatively idle for the last decade.”

 

Coal plants produce nearly one-third of the U.S. electric supply.  Jeff Holmstead formerly worked for the Environmental Protection Agency.  Now he represents the coal industry for the law office of Bracewell & Giuliani.  He says the new rule could force some plants to close.  And he warns that higher electric rates could push industrial operations overseas.

 

“And to some extent, we’re seeing that happen already in Europe, where Europe has had almost no investment from heavy industry and heavy industries that formerly were in Europe are moving to China or India and in some cases even in the United States, because power prices here today are significantly lower than they are in Europe.”

 

Jeff Holmstead says the administration is wrong to propose a measure that critics say does little to solve the climate change problem.  He suggests that investing in a technological fix would be a better way to deal with the issue.

 

“And until we can figure out a way to allow countries around the world to have the benefits that we enjoy from reliable affordable power, without coal, it is not going to make any different at all to impose expensive requirements in the United States.”  

 

Kevin Kennedy agrees that rules alone are not enough.  He says the plan is an important sign to other countries that the United States is taking the lead in the battle against climate change.

 

“That makes it much more likely that you will be able to get a strong international agreement next year, where you would expect to see China and India and other countries coming to the table, more willing to think about reductions on their own.”

 

The administration has announced a one-year period for comments on the proposals.  After that, the rules will be finalized.  The coal power industry is expected to fight the measure.  United Nations negotiators hope to have a new climate change treaty in place by 2015.  

 

 

Question image

Obama Proposes Limits on Power Plant Pollution

Test your vocabulary and comprehension.

This forum has been closed.
Comment Sorting
Comments
     
by: Maria from: Smolensk, Russia
06/12/2014 7:25 PM
Recently the American President Barack Obama determinated the new proposal for America power stations. The authorities propose falling the emissions from power stations. The administration accuse the power stations of polluting the air and climate change worldwide. According to this plan the plants what pollute with toxic chemicals the environment should drop climate-changing emissions by two thousand and thirty year. The new proposal would affect six hundred coal-fired power stations across the United States of America. The officials argue with each other about effectiveness of taking such measure.
The head of the Environmental Protection Agency believes this proposal to have strong effect on the public health and help to develop a world-leading clean energy economy. Furthermore, she suggests the approach to this problem to need to be more flexible. Similarly, according to the Jeff Holmstead* s opinion who works for the coal industry the officials*s agreement need to be more careful with power plants so this plan could force these plants to close. He assumes the higher electric rates to enforce the leading manufacturers to move the production overseas. Moreover, he maintains such law to not solve the climate change problem. He guesses the investments in a technological fix to be a better way to solve this issue. Kelvin Kennedy suggests the best way to solve this problem to get a strong international laws against polluters.
The environmental issue is that the significant increase in pollution could affect the health of the futher generations. And people must be responsible for saving our nature.


by: mustafa from: Kenya
06/10/2014 4:04 PM
a clean environment is suitable for a life in ahuman being also animals.,so it is adue to of every organism to take. the responsibility of his/her environment in a way of better place.


by: Afiq from: Indonesia
06/10/2014 9:53 AM
The propose rule to limit pollution is a good innovation. US has many natural shale gas well. So, it support switching from coal consumption to natural gas consumption for power plan


by: Kashif Lodhi from: Pakistan
06/10/2014 7:36 AM
It is the duty of every person in society to move forward in order to limits pollution .thank you

Learn with The News

  • FILE - Chinese Premier Li Keqiang, right, walks past Chinese President Xi Jinping as they arrive to the Monument to the People's Heroes during a ceremony marking Martyr’s Day at Tiananmen Square in Beijing, China, Sept. 30, 2014.

    Audio China’s Constitution Receives New Attention

    The constitution took effect in the early 1980s, when the Communist Party was opening up the country economically. Now China is at a new crossroads. Observers say it is reaching for a new economic growth model. Chinese officials will promise to defend its rules when they take office. | In The News More

  • Video More US Hispanic Women Convert to Islam

    Latinos are one of the fastest growing groups in the Muslim religion. The Pew Research Center says about six percent of American Muslims are Latino. And women make up a little more than half of the new converts -- the people who have changed their religion to Islam. More

  • This image released by USCIS shows a sample of the front of the redesigned green card carried by foreign-born residents living permanently in the U.S. The Homeland Security Department is issuing the redesigned "green card" that is stacked with safety feat

    Audio US 'Green Card Lottery' Ending November 3

    State Department’s Diversity Visa program closes November 3rd. Millions of people have entered the program, hoping to win a visa. But only 50,000 are chosen. 5,000 more are available under the Nicaraguan and Central America Relief Act. The green card lottery closes on Monday. | As It Is More

  • A convoy of peshmerga vehicles is escorted by Turkish Kurds on their way to the Turkish-Syrian border, in Kiziltepe near the southeastern city of Mardin October 29, 2014

    Audio Iraqi Kurdish Fighters Enter Kobani

    Also in the news, Burkina Faso ends efforts to extend its presidential term limit after protests in the capital. Ukraine says the EU will be guarantor in any gas deal with Russia. Myanmar holds a major meeting Friday. And claims of cheating delay SAT results for South Korean and Chinese students. More

  • Video Singapore Film Ban Raises Free Speech Issue

    The documentary film, “To Singapore, with Love” tells about political dissidents from Singapore. The film has been shown at public events in Britain, India and Malaysia, among other countries. But one place the movie cannot be seen is Singapore. That is because the government there has banned it. More

Featured Stories

  • Obama Halloween

    Audio Halloween Is Big with Kids and Business

    The National Retail Federation says sales of Halloween goods will total about $7.4 billion this year. It says the average American will spend about $77. The group expects 162 million people to celebrate. The NRF predicts 54 million of them will hold Halloween parties. | American Mosaic More

  • A print shows the Second Battle of Bull Run, also called Second Manassas.

    Audio South Defeats North Again at Manassas

    Lincoln named George Pope to lead the Army of Virginia. He wanted to join Pope’s forces with the Army of the Potomac and break through Confederate defenses around Richmond. But General Robert E. Lee decided to hit Pope first. More

  • Star House

    Video Home of Last Comanche Chief Close to Ruins

    One of the most interesting people in U.S. history is Quanah Parker, the last chief of the country’s Comanche Indian tribe. Quanah Parker was the son of a Comanche warrior and a white woman who had been captured by the Indians. Quanah Parker was a fierce fighter. More

  • FILE - A veterinarian at the nonprofit Bali Animal Welfare Association gives a rabies shot to a puppy in Kebon Kaja village, Bangli Regency in Bali, Indonesia.

    Audio Mass Vaccination of Dogs Can Eliminate Rabies

    About 70,000 people worldwide die every year of rabies. Rabies is a viral infection that people get mainly through dog bites. Scientists say vaccinating dogs can effectively get rid of rabies outbreaks in dog populations. And this will have a domino effect, fewer humans with rabies. More

  • Methane oxidizing

    Photogallery Small Organisms in Deep Sea Rocks Eat Methane

    The gas methane has been linked to rising temperatures on Earth. But methane does not stay in the atmosphere as long as another “greenhouse gas” -- carbon dioxide. Scientists say both gases trap heat from the sun. They prevent heat from escaping into outer space. More

Practice Your Writing

Confessions of an English Learner BlogConfessions of an English Learner Blog

Tell us About Our Programs