The American Public Power Association (Association) supports President Trump’s executive order calling for a reexamination of the Environmental Protection Agency’s rules regulating greenhouse gas emissions from new and existing fossil fuel-fired power plants. Few disagree that these rules envisioned broad and transformative changes to the electricity industry. As the voice of utilities that are units of state and local government, the Association firmly believes that states should maintain the authority to plan and implement generation and energy policies that are suitable for their circumstances. Public power has previously voiced its legal objection to the rule for requiring utilities to fundamentally alter the way they generate electricity. In some cases, utilities would have been forced to abandon functional power plants while continuing to pay them off.
We appreciate the Administration’s recognition that a review of these rules is needed with the goal of reducing uncertainty attached to their implementation and stabilizing costs to end-use consumers. The Association looks forward to a meticulous review and consideration of these matters by EPA.
We are also supportive of the Administration’s decision to rescind the use of the social cost of carbon and guidance on climate change under the National Environmental Policy Act required by the previous Administration. Rescinding these policies will ensure projects needed to transition the nation to energy independence are realized in a manner that ensures a more diverse energy portfolio while still appropriately balancing affordability, reliability, and sustainability.
Public power utilities will continue their substantial progress in reducing greenhouse gas emissions through greater use of non- and low-emitting sources of electricity generation, such as hydropower and other renewables, nuclear, and natural gas, and the implementation of affordable, common-sense energy efficiency and conservation programs.