Carbon Pollution Standards

FACT SHEET: Clean Power Plan Overview

CUTTING CARBON POLLUTION FROM POWER PLANTS


On June 2, 2014, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, under President Obama’s Climate Action Plan, proposed a commonsense plan to cut carbon pollution from power plants. The science shows that climate change is already posing risks to our health and our economy. The Clean Power Plan will maintain an affordable, reliable energy system, while cutting pollution and protecting our health and environment now and for future generations.

Our climate is changing, and we’re feeling the dangerous and costly effects right now.

  • Average temperatures have risen in most states since 1901, with seven of the top 10 warmest years on record occurring since 1998.
  • Climate and weather disasters in 2012 cost the American economy more than $100 billion.

Although there are limits at power plants for other pollutants like arsenic and mercury, there are currently no national limits on carbon.

  • Children, the elderly, and the poor are most vulnerable to a range of climate-related health effects, including those related to heat stress, air pollution, extreme weather events, and others.

Nationwide, the Clean Power Plan will help cut carbon pollution from the power sector by 30 percent from 2005 levels.

  • Power plants are the largest source of carbon pollution in the U.S., accounting for roughly one-third of all domestic greenhouse gas emissions.
  • The proposal will also cut pollution that leads to soot and smog by over 25 percent in 2030.

Americans will see billions of dollars in public health and climate benefits, now and for future generations.

  • The Clean Power Plan will lead to climate and health benefits worth an estimated $55 billion to $93 billion in 2030, including avoiding 2,700 to 6,600 premature deaths and 140,000 to 150,000 asthma attacks in children.

States and businesses have already charted the path toward cleaner, more efficient power.

  • States, cities and businesses are already taking action.
  • The Clean Power Plan puts states in the driver’s seat to a cleaner, more efficient power fleet of the future by giving them the flexibility to choose how to meet their goals.

With EPA’s flexible proposal, we can cut wasted energy, improve efficiency, and reduce pollution – while still having all the power we need to grow our economy and maintain our competitive edge.

  • The agency’s proposal is flexible—reflecting the different needs of different states.
  • The proposal will put Americans to work making the U.S. electricity system less polluting and our homes and businesses more efficient, shrinking electricity bills by roughly 8 percent in 2030.
  • It will keep the United States—and more importantly our businesses—at the forefront of a global movement to produce and consume energy in a better, more sustainable way.

Printable version of the fact sheet:

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