Obama’s Power Plan Mandates Deeper Carbon Cuts but Makes It Easier for States to Comply

Zoe Schlanger

August 3, 2015


Coal-burning power plants are the single biggest source of carbon pollution in the United States and make up nearly a third of the nation’s total carbon emissions. On Monday, the Obama administration released its final draft of a package of rules meant to rein them in.
The new version of the rules, called “the Clean Power Plan,” mandates deeper carbon emissions cuts than the previous version, released last year, did, but it gives power plants more time to comply. Prior to this rule package, which will be enacted under the Clean Air Act, the U.S. had no national limits on carbon pollution.
The final version of the rules mandate that the energy sector in each state must reduce its emissions so that by 2030, national carbon emissions will drop by an expected 32 percent below 2005 levels, compared with the 30 percent cut outlined in the previous draft of the rules.