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Proposed EPA Rules: What’s the Point?

Justin Gillis and Henry Fountain in the New York Times : ” … by itself, the president’s plan will barely nudge the global emissions that scientists say are threatening the welfare of future generations.”  

“It is clear Mr. Obama’s immediate goal is not to solve the emissions problem, but to get the country moving faster in the right direction. The new rule alone offers little hope that the United States and other nations can achieve cuts on a scale required to meet the internationally agreed limit on global warming. But experts say that achieving the pledge Mr. Obama made in Copenhagen … would be quite likely, if his plan survives.”  

Bloomberg : The proposed regulations won’t be enough “unless the rest of the world follows.”  

“1,200 coal-fired plants are proposed globally, with more than three-quarters of those planned for India and China alone. If all are built … that would add more than 80 percent to existing capacity.”  

But there are long-term benefits: “The regulation in the U.S., once it is fully implemented in the coming years, could spur investments in carbon-capture equipment or other technology that reduces carbon pollution … And once those technologies are introduced in the U.S., they can spread.”  

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Topics: wonk-wire