US to roll back key climate regulation

World Today

FILE – In this Oct. 4, 2016 file photo wind turbines spin near Leipzig, central Germany, Tuesday, Oct. 4, 2016. World leaders affirmed their commitment Thursday, June 1, 2017 to combating climate change ahead of U.S. President Donald Trump’s announcement on pulling out of the Paris climate accord. (AP Photo/Matthias Schrader,file)

The writing was on the wall, when U.S. President Donald Trump announced plans to withdraw from the Paris Climate Agreement in June.

Now, U.S. Environmental Protection Agency chief, Scott Pruitt says the U.S. will roll back the clean power plan, a key emissions reduction approach that would have helped the U.S. meet its commitments under Paris. It was a centerpiece of the Obama administration’s environmental policy.

CGTN’s Jessica Stone reports.

At an event in Kentucky, alongside Senate Majority Leader, Mitch McConnell, Pruitt said he will sign a proposed rule on Tuesday.

“The EPA and no federal agency should ever use its authority to say to you we are going to declare war on any sector of our economy,” he said.

McConnell, who represents Kentucky, a coal-producer, has called the plan “a dagger to the heart of the American middle class,” which promises higher electricity costs and living costs.

The clean power plan targeted coal fire power plant emissions. Those plants make up a third of the nation’s carbon emissions each year and formed a key tool in helping the U.S. meet its emissions reductions under the Paris deal.

“It’ll deliver the certainty that will unleash market forces that drive even more innovation and investment, and spur even cleaner power and all sorts of new low-carbon technologies,” former EPA Administrator, Gina McCarthy said at the June 2014 announcement of the plan.

But Trump had long promised to pull out of Paris and the Clean Power Plan, and it had repeatedly been held up in American courts.

Trump said in June that the U.S. plans to “begin negotiations to re-enter either the Paris accord or a really entirely new transaction on terms that are fair to the United States.”