Power Plants Responsible for Almost 30 Percent of New Hampshire’s Global Warming Pollution

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The Proposed Clean Power Plan Would Be A Significant Step Forward on Climate at International Scale

Environment New Hampshire

Contact: Travis Madsen, (720) 937-2609, [email protected]

Concord, NH–As international leaders prepare for the United Nations Climate Summit next week in New York, a new study shows that U.S. power plants produced more carbon pollution in 2012 than the entire economies of Russia, India, Japan or any other nation besides China. Advocates at Environment New Hampshire pointed to the data to support proposed limits on carbon pollution from power plants.

 “When our power plants create as much pollution as an entire country, we know the climate’s in trouble,” said Travis Madsen, Senior Manager at Environment New Hampshire. “It’s time for the rest of the country to adopt limits on carbon pollution and accelerate investment in clean energy – following the lead of New Hampshire.”

New Hampshire, along with eight other northeastern states, participates in the Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative, a groundbreaking program to clean up global warming pollution from power plants.

The Environment New Hampshire Research & Policy Center report, America’s Dirtiest Power Plants, comes as more than a hundred thousand activists and world leaders converge in New York City seeking solutions to climate change, which scientists have clearly linked to extreme weather events such as Hurricane Sandy – which produced a more damaging storm surge because of sea level rise.

The report also comes as the Environmental Protection Agency takes public comments on proposed, first-ever limits on carbon pollution from power plants. If enacted, the limits would be the largest step the United States or any country has ever taken to cut global warming emissions.

By comparing carbon emissions from U.S. power plants in 2012 to total carbon emissions of entire countries, the Environment New Hampshire analysis shows why limiting pollution from coal plants would make such a big impact. Key findings include:

  • If the United States’ fleet of coal- and gas-burning power plants were a country, it would be the 3rd-largest carbon polluter, behind the entire US and China.
  • New Hampshire ranks 44th for carbon pollution from power plants – in part thanks to clean energy policies like the Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative.
  • The Environmental Protection Agency’s proposed Clean Power Plan would reduce as much carbon pollution in 2030 as the entire country of Canada, the world’s 8th-largest polluter, emits today.

The Clean Power Plan would also spur investments in clean energy like wind and solar power, for which there is vast potential across the country and in New Hampshire.

Americans have submitted more than 6 million comments to EPA supporting limits on carbon pollution from power plants; and more than a thousand people testified in support of the Clean Power Plan at hearings held across the country this summer. Local elected officials, small businesses owners and dozens of members of Congress have all voiced support for limits on carbon pollution.

 “The Clean Power Plan has given New Hampshire and the nation a huge opportunity to cut dangerous carbon pollution and take charge of our energy future,” said Madsen. “All of our leaders, especially Senator Kelly Ayotte, should back EPA’s plan and accelerate our clean energy progress.”