Trump Administration Climate Action Rollback Decision Is Misguided and Economically Damaging
March 28, 2017 /3BL Media/ - The Trump administration’s efforts to dismantle the U.S. Climate Action Plan, including withdrawing support for the Environmental Protection Agency’s Clean Power Plan, “is completely misguided and ignores the irreversible clean energy economy that is already underway, creating good-paying jobs and economic vitality in communities across the country,” Ceres President Mindy Lubber said in a statement today. Lubber served as the EPA Administrator for the New England Region in 2000.
The policies under the Obama administration’s Climate Action Plan are all core components of how the U.S. intends to meet its international climate commitments under the Paris Climate Agreement. Lubber was especially critical of efforts to unwind the Clean Power Plan, which is aimed at reducing carbon pollution from U.S. power plants.
“Today’s announcement, while not unexpected, is a clear step in the wrong direction and runs counter to the more than 365 U.S. companies and investors who publicly supported the Clean Power Plan when it was announced in 2015, as well as the more than 1,000 companies and investors who back the recently released the Business Backs Low-Carbon USA statement,” Lubber said. “Companies and investors from across the country support the Clean Power Plan and other low-carbon policies currently under attack because they are precisely the type of consistent, forward-thinking frameworks the business community wants and needs to invest and grow with confidence and certainty.”
Lubber also sharply criticized other components of the Trump administration’s order, including directions to eliminate the federal government’s Social Cost of Carbon calculation, rescind the Bureau of Land Management's and EPA's methane waste rules, and cut requirements for federal projects to review their contributions to climate change, which would abruptly end a review of the coal-leasing program.
“Today’s actions are a wholesale attack on decades of bipartisan work in addressing the very real threat of climate change, which is already impacting coastal and non-coastal areas alike,” she said. “These orders will be damaging for American innovation and competitiveness, investment and job creation. By taking this backward step, the U.S. risks a stalled transition to a low-carbon economy, thus giving China and other countries the upper hand as they embrace renewable energy and other low-carbon technologies that are proliferating all across the globe.”
Ceres is a sustainability nonprofit organization that is mobilizing many of the world’s largest investors and companies to take stronger action on climate change, water scarcity and other global sustainability challenges. Ceres directs the Investor Network on Climate Risk, a group of 120 institutional investors managing about $15 trillion assets focused on the business risks and opportunities of climate change and water scarcity. Ceres also engages with 100-plus companies, many of them Fortune 500 firms, committed to sustainable business practices and the urgency for strong climate and clean energy policies.