Obama Unveils Climate Rules, With Texas-Wide Implications


Calling climate change “one of the key challenges of our lifetimes and future generations,” President Obama on Monday unveiled the final version of his state-by-state effort to combat the warming phenomenon by reshaping the nation’s energy sector — a plan that has roiled Republican leaders in Texas.

“No challenge poses a greater threat to our future and future generations, than a changing climate,” Obama said in a White House address, calling his new rule “the single most important step America has ever taken in the fight” against climate change.

The so-called Clean Power Plan aims to require the nation’s existing power plants to slash their carbon emissions – 32 percent from 2005 levels by 2030. That is 2 percent higher than the reduction proposed in a draft plan last year.

Now final, the unprecedented regulations could significantly affect Texas. As an industrial juggernaut, the Lone Star State generates more electricity and emits far more carbon than any other state. Texas also leads the nation in producing natural gas – a fuel that policymakers could lean on while trying to shift from dirtier coal-fired energy. The state also is already feeling the effects of climate change, including sea level rise, extreme heat and drought, and more frequent flooding, experts say.
(by Jim Malewitz and Kiah Collier, Texas Tribune)

Read our look at the EPA's supposed solution