President Donald Trump is expected to sign an executive order directing the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency to dismantle Obama-era climate rules, including the Clean Power Plan, which sets limits on carbon dioxide emissions from existing fossil-fueled power plants.
“Like other executive orders recently signed by the president, this one by itself would not roll back the Clean Power Plan,” says Tim Profeta, director of Duke University’s Nicholas Institute for Environmental Policy Solutions. “Altering a final rule, like the Clean Power Plan, isn’t as simple as the stroke of a pen. It will likely require the EPA to undertake a new rulemaking process including public notice and comment that could last a few years.”
“Unless Congress amends the Clean Air Act or the Supreme Court reverses prior opinions, the EPA retains its authority -- and a legal obligation -- to regulate greenhouse gases under the Clean Air Act. The question then becomes which Clean Air Act program is appropriate for the EPA to fulfill its legal obligation -- the authority that underpins the Clean Power Plan or another provision of the Clean Air Act -- and how the Trump administration believes that authority should be deployed in its discretion.”
Tim Profeta, director of Duke’s Nicholas Institute for Environmental Policy Solutions, has worked for nearly two decades on climate policy, with a particular focus on the use of market forces to reduce greenhouse gas emissions. His recent work has focused on using flexible mechanisms to create climate regulations in the U.S. under the Clean Air Act and how the model of carbon regulation being developed in the U.S. could translate to other countries.
Archive video of Profeta discussing the Clean Power Plan: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Wbzx0cMtKKw
- For additional comment, contact Tim Profeta at: