Energy, Special Topics in Environmental Management

Still Planning for the CPP

The Environmental Council of the States (ECOS) has assembled an illuminating summary of state reactions to the U.S. Supreme Court’s stay of the Clean Power Plan (CPP). The stay recognizes the strength of judicial challenges to the rule and allows those challenges to proceed through the U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit and possibly through the Supreme Court itself. Since the CPP was proposed and then made final, some U.S. lawmakers, state leaders, and industry groups have urged that states take no action to implement the rule, which requires that states meet goals for reducing carbon emissions from coal-fired power plants.

But state responses to the stay are as varied as the states themselves. According to the ECOS list, 17 states have said they will continue to develop plans to comply with the CPP, and 10 have said that all compliance plans will cease if such plans ever got started. Some states that refuse to develop compliance plans say they are nonetheless proceeding with their own policies to reduce carbon emissions from power plants and move forward with renewable energy programs. Among the remaining states, most say they are exploring their options and have not decided or announced what they will do; these include states that are participating in the suit against the EPA. Also, several states that are suing the Agency are still moving ahead with compliance plans; at least one of these states is doing so because a state law requires it.

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