On Monday the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) announced the most significant action to combat climate disruption in American history with a new rule calling for a 30 percent cut in carbon emissions from power plants by 2030. In announcing the proposed regulation, EPA Administrator Gina McCarthy said that “today, climate change — fueled by carbon pollution — supercharges risks not just to our health, but to our communities, our economy, and our way of life.”

The EPA is taking aim at the nation’s more than 600 coal-fired power plants and gives states flexibility in how they want to meet the pollution reduction targets that are set at a 2005 baseline. Options include state-level cap-and-trade programs that make industry pay for their pollution and incentivize companies to lower their carbon emissions, adding more renewable energy sources such as solar, wind and hydro to the power grid, and increasing energy efficiency technology.

Related: Cutting Coal Pollution by 20% is Just One Way Obama is Making Climate History

“Today, the president made good on his promise to American families that his administration would tackle the climate crisis, and clean up and modernize the way we power our country,” said Sierra Club Executive Director Michael Brune.

The EPA expects the new rule, which President Obama is issuing with his executive authority provided by the 1970 Clean Air Act, to boost the economy by up to $93 billion, decrease electricity bills by an average of eight percent annually, prevent up to 6,600 premature deaths and up to 150,000 asthma attacks. McCarthy also said that the new pollution rule will be a job creator.

“All this means more jobs, not less. We’ll need tens of thousands of American workers — in construction, transmission, and more — to make cleaner power a reality.”

+ Environmental Protection Agency

Via Huffington Post

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