Center for Biological Diversity

For Immediate Release, October 10, 2017

Contact: Vera Pardee, (858) 717-1448,

Trump's EPA Will Kill Clean Power Plan, Delaying Crucial Climate Protection

WASHINGTON— The Trump administration today formally proposed to rip up the Clean Power Plan without any replacement. Today’s decision aims to wipe away a critical Obama-era measure to cut greenhouse emissions from power plants, which would have been one of the Environmental Protection Agency’s most significant tools to reduce carbon pollution.

But EPA administrator Scott Pruitt’s repeal of the Clean Power Plan will face formidable legal obstacles. The Center for Biological Diversity is part of a coalition of organizations defending the plan in court. Repealing the plan without any replacement exposes the Trump administration to new legal peril because it flouts the Clean Air Act’s mandate to reduce greenhouse gas emissions from the nation’s power industry.

“We’ll fight Pruitt’s despicable sabotage of the EPA’s most important effort to fight pollution and protect us from climate change,” said Vera Pardee, senior counsel with the Center’s Climate Law Institute. “Undoing the existing plan without any replacement will add years of doing absolutely nothing to reduce power plant emissions. Pruitt’s reckless disregard for the EPA’s essential duties should cost him his job.”

The nation’s fleet of power plants is the second largest source of U.S. greenhouse gas pollution. The Clean Power Plan is among the most significant pieces so far in the overall puzzle of curbing carbon emissions in the United States.

The repeal is the latest in a wave of anti-climate Trump actions, including efforts to walk back protections against greenhouse emission and air pollution from the nation’s light and heavy duty vehicles. 

EPA administrator Scott Pruitt has repeatedly denied fundamental scientific facts about climate change. “I would not agree that [carbon dioxide is] a primary contributor to the global warming that we see,” he said in a CNBC interview in March.

The Center for Biological Diversity is a national, nonprofit conservation organization with more than 1.5 million members and online activists dedicated to the protection of endangered species and wild places.

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