US to get 30% more renewables by 2030 under new power plan
Wind farm in Oklahoma. Author: U.S. Department of Agriculture. License: Creative Commons, Attribution 2.0 Generic
The US will be producing 30% more renewable energy in 2030 under the country’s Clean Power Plan, presented by President Obama on Monday.
This new federal regulation sets carbon dioxide (CO2) emission limits for existing power plants in the separate states. The main goal is to cut CO2 emissions by 32% from 2005 levels by 2030.
The Clean Power Plan will bring billions in climate and public health benefits and prevent as many as 3,600 premature deaths in 2030. Apart from boosting renewable energy generation, the plan is to also support the further reduction of the cost of renewables.
Already, 35 US states have renewable energy targets and over 25 have energy efficiency targets. Under the new regulation, each state will formulate its own plan to address greenhouse gas emissions from existing fossil fuel-fired power plants. Apart from their separate emission reduction targets for 2030, states will have to meet interim goals from 2022 to 2029.
The US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) signed the final Clean Power Plan on August 3. It was welcomed by a number of utilities and organisations and, as usual, also attracted disapproval. The American Coalition for Clean Coal Electricity (ACCCE), the National Mining Association, and the US Chamber of Commerce are among the ones opposing the plan. "It is a bad deal for America, and we will pursue all available options, including litigation if necessary, to block EPA's regulatory power grab from taking effect," said the Chamber of Commerce president and CEO Thomas Donohu.