Letter | Congress must stop thwarting anti-pollution plans

06/18/2014 6:16 PM

06/18/2014 6:17 PM

The Earth's climate is getting warmer, and humans are responsible.

That's not my opinion, that's a fact supported by more than 97 percent of climate scientists. The outcome over the next 50 years and beyond could include massive heat waves, prolonged drought, extreme weather and the mass extinction of species.

The good news is we can do something about it while helping the economy. We've already made a good start by making our cars and trucks more efficient, while starting to limit pollution from the dirtiest power plants, the chief contributor of America's climate change pollution. To prevent the devastating effects of the climate crisis, we should all support these efforts.

The EPA has proposed America's first-ever national limits on climate pollution from future power plants, and received nearly 4 million comments in support of this rule before the May 9 comment deadline.

One June 2, the EPA proposed similar rules limiting climate pollution from America's existing power plants. This is big, considering that U.S. power plants emit approximately 2.3 billion tons of heat-trapping carbon dioxide pollution each year, accounting for 40 percent of America's CO2 pollution.

While virtually all climate scientists agree that human activities is warming the planet, 1 out of 3 members of Congress are stalwart, head-in-the-sand climate deniers, and many more hide behind other excuses to avoid addressing this threat.

In spite of the fact that 7 out of 10 Americans support federal regulation of power plant emissions, Congress is launching a seemingly endless barrage of attacks against these common-sense solutions, putting our communities at risk. The House has already passed the so-called "Electricity Security and Affordability Act," H.R. 3826, which would create a giant utility industry loophole in our clean air laws, and would allow virtually unlimited carbon pollution from power plants.

The writer lives in Myrtle Beach.

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