- August 11, 2016 -


Clinton Has Vowed To “Defend And Build On” The Obama Administration’s Anti-Coal Regulations, Which Has Earned Her Support From Environmentalists But Led To Concerns From Labor Unions. “Clinton was quick last week to praise President Obama’s stricter rules on coal-fired power plants, vowing to both defend and build on them. Her stance won plaudits from environmentalists within her party, but unions, a key constituency, are concerned she has yet to say how tougher climate rules will affect coal industry jobs.” (Valerie Volcovici and Amanda Becker, “Clinton Strays From Her Roots As Coal Miner’s Great Granddaughter,” Reuters, 8/10/15)

Clinton’s 2016 Campaign Chair, John Podesta, Was The “Architect” Of The Obama Administration’s Carbon Regulations. “Mrs. Clinton’s campaign chairman, John Podesta, was the architect of Mr. Obama’s signature climate change policy, a set of E.P.A. regulations to cut carbon emissions from power plants. Mrs. Clinton’s new plan appears explicitly designed to build on that plan.” (Trip Gabriel and Coral Davenport, “Hillary Clinton Lays Out Climate Change Plan,” The New York Times¸7/27/15)

In August 2015, Obama Finalized New EPA Regulations That Mandate “Tougher Greenhouse Gas Cuts On American Power Plants.” “Aiming to jolt the rest of the world to action, President Barack Obama moved ahead Sunday with even tougher greenhouse gas cuts on American power plants, setting up a certain confrontation in the courts with energy producers and Republican-led states.” (Josh Lederman, “Climate Change: Obama Orders Steeper Cuts From Power Plants,” The Associated Press, 8/2/15)

  • Obama’s EPA Initially Proposed The Regulations In 2014, Which Take Aim At The Country’s Coal-Fired Power Plants By Drastically Cutting Carbon Emissions. “The Obama administration on Monday announced one of the strongest actions ever taken by the United States government to fight climate change, a proposed Environmental Protection Agency regulation to cut carbon pollution from the nation’s power plants 30 percent from 2005 levels by 2030. The regulation takes aim at the largest source of carbon pollution in the United States, the nation’s more than 600 coal-fired power plants.” (Coral Davenport, “Unveiling New Carbon Plan, E.P.A. Focuses On Flexibility,” The New York Times, 6/2/14)

The Final EPA “Clean Power Plan” Rule “Requires A 32 Percent Cut In Power-Plant Carbon-Dioxide Emissions By 2030 From 2005 Levels.” “The limits on carbon emissions are a central component of the U.S.’s pledge to its international partners to cut greenhouse gases by a range of 26% to 28% by 2025, from 2005 levels. The final Environmental Protection Agency rule requires a 32% cut in power-plant carbon-dioxide emissions by 2030 from 2005 levels, which is a more ambitious target than the draft rules proposed last year.” (Colleen McCain Nelson And Amy Harder, “Obama Announces Rule To Cut Carbon Emissions From Power Plants,” The Wall Street Journal, 8/3/15)

The Final EPA Rule, Running More Than 1500 Pages, Explicitly Says That States Can Use Tax Increases “As A Tool For Meeting Their Emissions-Cutting Requirements.” “In a change from the draft plan, the final EPA rule now explicitly says states can use ‘fees’ (i.e., taxes) as a tool for meeting their emissions-cutting requirements. That’s on page 899 of the massive 1,560-page rule. Plans that states craft to comply with the mandate, the rule states, ‘could accommodate imposition by a state of a fee for CO2 emissions from affected [electric generating units], an approach suggested by a number of commenters.’ That language is a rather brief blessing but enough to excite the ad-hoc, Left-Right mix of environmentalists, economists, and a few conservative carbon-tax advocates who have long been swimming upstream at the national and state level.”(Ben Geman, “Obama Climate Plan Revives Talk Of A Carbon Tax,” National Journal, 8/3/15)

Obama’s Plan To Crack Down On Emissions Is “Unprecedented” And “Controversial.” “In finalizing the unprecedented pollution controls, Obama was installing the core of his ambitious and controversial plan to drastically reduce overall U.S. emissions, as he works to secure a legacy on fighting global warming. Yet it will be up to Obama’s successor to implement his plan, which reverberated across the 2016 presidential campaign trail.” (Josh Lederman, “Obama Orders Steeper Greenhouse Gas Cuts From U.S. Power Plants,” The Associated Press, 8/2/15)

  • Obama’s Regulations Are Intended To “Wean” The Country Off Coal Produced Energy. “Another key change to the initial proposal marks a major shift for Obama on natural gas, which the president has championed as a ‘bridge fuel’ whose growing use can help the U.S. wean itself off dirtier coal power while ramping up renewable energy capacity. The final version aims to keep the share of natural gas in the nation’s power mix at current levels.” (Josh Lederman, “Obama Orders Steeper Greenhouse Gas Cuts From U.S. Power Plants,” The Associated Press, 8/2/15)

In June 2014, Clinton Praised The Obama Administration’s EPA Rules On Coal-Fired Power Plants And Described The New Rules As “A Very Creative American Solution.” CLINTON: “So part of what President Obama is doing, and I fully support it, is making it clear that the United States is going to act. We’ve done work on mileage, now with the EPA rules on coal-fired plants, and a very creative American solution, having different states figure out what they can do to try to lower their coal-fired emissions. But then the Supreme Court just agreed that the government has the authority to regulate carbon.” (Hillary Clinton, Remarks At The Aspen Ideas Festival, Aspen, CO, 6/30/14)

Clinton Commended Obama For His Actions On Climate Change, Including New EPA Regulations To Limit Carbon Emissions From Coal-Fired Power Plants. “On climate change, Clinton commended President Obama for some recent actions, including new federal regulations limiting carbon emissions from coal-fired power plants. ‘We’re moving,’ Clinton said, ‘but we need to do so much more.’” (Philip Rucker, “Hillary Clinton Tries To Strike The Right Tone On Wealth And Income Inequality,” The Washington Post, 6/30/14)

  • But Clinton Also Said She Believed America Needed To Go Further Than Obama’s Actions: “So We Are Moving But We Need To Do So Much More.” CLINTON: “So we are moving but we need to do so much more. But the United States cannot go to an international forum unless we’ve done more. And I think what President Obama is now doing is laying down here is what the United States of America is going to do, what are you going to do and being able to bring people around the table by 2015 so maybe we can stem off what will be a terrible, terrible outcome for our world.” (Hillary Clinton, Remarks At The Aspen Ideas Festival, Aspen, CO, 6/30/14)

Clinton’s “Support Of Obama’s Climate Agenda” Will Be A Liability For Her 2016 Campaign. “If Clinton runs in 2016, her support of Obama’s climate agenda, and push for more policies, would likely put her in the crosshairs of Republicans who call the president’s emissions standards a ‘war on coal’ and energy jobs.” (Laura Barron-Lopez, “Clinton: US Must Do More On Climate,” The Hill, 7/1/14)

Clinton Was “Really Proud” Of Obama For The 2014 EPA Regulations:

In June 2014, Clinton Said She Was “Really Proud Of President Obama For These New EPA Regulations.” CLINTON: “I am really proud of President Obama for these new EPA regulations and for the strong stance he has taken on climate change at home.” (Hillary Clinton, Remarks At Chicago Ideas Week, Chicago, IL, 6/11/14)

In June 2014, Clinton Said President Obama’s Use Of Executive Authority To Heavily Regulate Coal-Fired Power Plants Was “A Good Start” In Dealing With One Source Of Greenhouse Gas Emissions. CLINTON: “So here I think that we have to do what the President – President Obama is doing now. Within his executive authority, he has to take steps, as he recently did on the regulations for coal-fired plants. Recognizing that states are at different stages of development so that if you’re starting at a low base where you haven’t done very much to clean up the air, to deal with old plants, to come in with an alternative suite of energy products, then you’ve got to do more – but you’re given more time to do than if you’re a state like California or Massachusetts that have been real leaders – then your burden is different. So I think that if you look at the plan, it is a good start in dealing with one continuing source of greenhouse gas emissions.” (Hillary Clinton, Remarks At The BIO International Conference, 6/25/14)

Obama’s “Clean Power Plan” Regulations, Finalized In 2015, Will Raise Energy Costs And Kill Jobs:

Based On EPA Data, The American Action Forum Estimated The Obama Administration’s Finalized Regulations On Carbon Emissions Would Close 66 Power Plants, Eliminate 125,800 Coal Jobs, And Cut The Coal Industry In Half. “The final rule for the Clean Power Plan (CPP) was released by the Obama Administration this past August and is a direct attack on the coal industry. According to American Action Forum (AAF) research, the final plan, supported by Sec. Clinton, will shutter 66 power plants and eliminate 125,800 jobs in the coal industry. All of these figures are based on EPA data. The same study shows that using the 2012 baseline for coal generation and projections for 2030 output, the industry could shrink by 48 percent.” (Kimberly VanWhye, “’Revitalizing Coal Communities’: A $30 Billion Consolation Prize”, American Action Forum, 11/13/15)

An Analysis By NERA Economic Consulting Projected That Obama’s Carbon Regulations Will Cost As Much As $292 Billion. “NERA Economic Consulting has produced an analysis of the Clean Power Plan (CPP) recently finalized by the Obama Administration, aimed at reducing carbon dioxide emissions from new and existing power plants by 32 percent nationwide. NERA’s calculates the CPP could add $29 billion to $39 billion in costs to utilities or as much as $292 billion in added costs between 2022 and 2033, exclusive of added transmission, distribution and natural gas infrastructure costs.” (H. Sterling Burnett, “Economic Analysis of Clean Power Plan Shows High Cost, Minimal Benefits,” The Heartland Institute, 12/2/15)

The U.S. Chamber Of Commerce Estimates That The New Carbon Regulations Will Cause Annual Real Disposable Income To Decline More Than $200 Per Year, Totaling A Loss Of $3,400 By 2030. “Slower economic growth, job losses, and higher energy costs mean that annual real disposable household income will decline on an average of more than $200, with a peak loss of $367 in 2025. In fact, the typical household could lose a total of $3,400 in real disposable income during the modeled 2014-30 timeframe.” (“Assessing The Impact Of Potential New Carbon Regulations In The United States,” Institute For 21st Century Energy, 5/28/14)

As A Result Of These Regulations, The U.S. Chamber Of Commerce Estimates That From 2014 To 2030, On Average, The U.S. Economy Will Have 224,000 Fewer Jobs With A Peak Decline In Employment Of 442,000 Jobs. “On average, from 2014 to 2030, the U.S. economy will have 224,000 fewer jobs (Table ES-3), with a peak decline in employment of 442,000 jobs in 2022 (Figure ES-1). These job losses represent lost opportunities and income for hundreds of thousands of people that can never be recovered.” (“Assessing The Impact Of Potential New Carbon Regulations In The United States,” Institute For 21st Century Energy, 5/28/14)

“The Obama Administration Estimated The Emissions Limits Will Cost $8.4 Billion Annually By 2030.” (Josh Lederman, “Obama Orders Steeper Greenhouse Gas Cuts From U.S. Power Plants,” The Associated Press, 8/2/15)

  • Industry Experts Say That The Regulations “Will Require Billions Of Dollars In New Investments.” “Industry experts say cutting carbon emissions 32% by 2030 will require billions of dollars in investments for new transmission lines that accommodate more solar and wind power and new pipelines to feed natural-gas-fired power plants, as coal becomes less important as a fuel.” (Amy Harder, Colleen McCain Nelson and Rebecca Smith, “Obama’s New Climate-Change Regulations To Alter, Challenge Industry,” The Wall Street Journal, 8/2/15)

The Obama Administration Claims The Plan Will Lower Energy Costs, But It Does So By Assuming People Will Simply Use Less Energy, An Assumption Challenged By Energy Providers. “Although the administration predicts the plan will actually lower the average U.S. energy bill by almost $85 in 2030, companies that produce and distribute electricity aren’t buying it. The savings come largely from increased use of wind, power and hydro plants, which operate at a cost of close to zero after they’re installed but cost a lot to get up and running. The administration is also counting on people’s power bills going because they’ll simply use less power as a result of efficiency measures. The National Association of Manufacturers, the American Coalition for Clean Coal Electricity, the National Mining Association, the American Energy Alliance and the National Rural Electric Cooperative Association all predicted the rule would drive electricity bills up.” (“Winners And Losers Under Obama’s Stricter Power Plant Limits,” The Associated Press, 8/3/15)

Energy Executives Worry That The New Rules Will “Result In Shutting Power Plants” Leading To Higher Costs For Consumers. “Executives worry about the EPA plan’s cost, in part because it could result in shutting power plants that aren’t yet paid off, Mr. Akins said, meaning consumers will have to pay for assets that aren’t providing benefits. Other executives said consumers may be able to trim their electricity use and keep their bills flat—or even reduce them.” (Amy Harder, Colleen McCain, and Rebecca Smith, “Obama’s New Climate-Change Regulations To Alter, Challenge Industry,” The Wall Street Journal, 8/2/15)