The Chicago Sun-Times: Environmental protection advocates rally against affordable energy proposal
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Environmental protection and health activists gathered at the Federal Plaza Monday to protest a Trump administration proposal they say could send the country backward.
The Trump administration’s Affordable Clean Energy proposal –– which would replace the Obama administration’s Clean Power Plan –– focuses on reducing greenhouse gas emissions through loosening up the strict rules governing pollutants set forth in the Obama-era plan.
But advocates, as well as politicians, including Illinois Attorney General Lisa Madigan, U.S. Rep. Mike Quigley and Lt. Gov. candidate Juliana Stratton, say the plan is harmful.
Madigan, who testified at the only public hearing on the matter at the Metcalfe Federal Building, recounted calling the proposal “even worse than repealing the CPP because it could allow for even more pollution than if the US EPA simply did nothing.”
At the rally outside, she said, “Disgracefully, the current administration wants to roll back critical protections for our air, land and water.”
“U.S. EPA’s proposal is a full retreat in our battle against climate change,” Madigan said. “The U.S. EPA should increase the CPP’s ambition, not replace it with a hollow regulation that backtracks on advances already achieved … The so-called clean energy proposal cannot stand and if it is adopted I will take legal action to see that it is overturned.”
The Trump administration’s revised admissions guidelines could lead to as many as 1400 premature deaths by 2030 as a result of an increase in particulate matter in the environment, according to a recent analysis by the EPA.
A similar analysis of the Obama-era plan found that it would prevent as many as 3600 premature deaths by 2030.
In a statement, Quigley said Trump’s “dirty power scam” is “nothing more than a giveaway to corporate polluters and is absolutely not a credible replacement for the Obama-era Clean Power Plan.”