Exhaust rises in front of piles of coal at NRG Energy Inc.’s W.A. Parish Electric Generating Station in Thompsons, Texas, in March 2011. SOURCE: AP/David J. Phillip
Washington, D.C. — (ENEWSPF)–June 24, 2016. The litigants affiliated with the legal battle to dismantle the Clean Power Plan, or CPP, pumped more than 1.2 billion tons of carbon pollution into the atmosphere each year. According to an analysis of emissions data conducted by the Center for American Progress, the power producers currently suing the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, or EPA, to stop the CPP were responsible for 21 percent of all U.S. carbon pollution in 2013.
CAP’s new issue brief, titled “Suing and Spewing: The Massive Pollution Behind the Fight to Overturn the Clean Power Plan,” shows that the top electric power producers affiliated with the lawsuit also polluted as much carbon dioxide as 129 countries combined.
“The 16 power producers that are suing the EPA are more concerned with protecting their bottom lines than protecting the world from the effects of climate change,” said Erin Auel, Research Assistant for the Energy Policy team at CAP and author of the brief. “And even more power producers are members of associations that are petitioners in this case. The CPP is a key component of the United States’ effort to join the world in lowering carbon emissions and staving off the calamities that climate change will bring. This issue brief shines a light on power producers’ affiliations with the litigation against this crucial standard and demonstrates their vested interest in continuing to pollute.”
The brief also found that if the power producers affiliated with the case were their own country, they would be the sixth-largest CO2 emitter in the world. Furthermore, their carbon pollution is greater than that of 6 of the top 10 economies in the world. It would take more than 30 billion trees growing for 10 years to offset the carbon pollution that these companies emit in a single year.
The key associations and companies that are party to the lawsuit to protect their massively polluting investments include the following: the American Coalition for Clean Coal Electricity; the American Public Power Association; the National Rural Electric Cooperative Association; the Utility Air Regulatory Group; Southern Company; NRG Energy Inc.; Energy Future Holdings Corp.; and others.
Click here to read the brief.