WASHINGTON, D.C. – Oregon’s Senator Jeff Merkley released the following statement after the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), acting under orders from President Donald Trump and EPA Administrator Scott Pruitt, officially began the process of rolling back the Clean Power Plan. The Clean Power Plan is the most significant federal action underway to curb carbon pollution and take on climate change, and the U.S.’s major commitment under the Paris climate accord.
“This Trump-Pruitt attack on the Clean Power Plan is an assault on clean air, a safe environment, and our children’s health. It is politics trumping the public interest.
“At a time when many other countries are stepping up their efforts to combat climate chaos, the United States is doing a faceplant on the world stage. While China and other nations are seizing the moment to be leaders in the energy technologies that will power the future, Trump and Pruitt are trying to give that leadership and those jobs away. Our politicians can sing as loudly as they want off the Koch Brothers’ climate denial song sheet, but it won’t stop increasingly destructive hurricanes, wildfires, and droughts from wrecking Americans’ lives, homes, and businesses.
“It should not be lost on the courts, where this will undoubtedly wind up, that under the Clean Air Act, the EPA is required to act on carbon pollution. And whether the Trump-Pruitt EPA gets away with doing nothing or is dragged kicking and screaming into some kind of action, it’s up to the American people through every state, county, city, business, college, and place of worship in America, to make up for our federal inaction by setting a bold vision to get to 100% clean and renewable energy by 2050.”
Merkley is the author of the Keep It in the Ground Act, which would end new coal, oil and gas leases on public lands; and the 100 by ’50 Act, landmark legislation laying the roadmap for the U.S. to transition completely off of fossil fuels by 2050.