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Connecticut News

Connecticut Says EPA Rollback Will Disproportionately Hurt State

J. David Ake
The Dave Johnson coal-fired power plant in Glenrock, Wyo., as seen in July.

Connecticut environmental officials say the state will be disproportionately affected by new EPA rollbacks on coal pollution announced Tuesday by the Trump administration.

The rule change would stall Obama’s Clean Power Plan, which shifted away from coal and toward less-polluting energy sources. The new rules give states broad authority to determine how to restrict greenhouse gas emissions from coal-fired power plants. The administration is expected to let states relax pollution rules for power plants that need upgrades.

“The Trump administration yet again has decided to ignore the science and cave to special interests. That’s not what we do in Connecticut. In Connecticut we actually try to understand the science that drives us toward making the decision to invest in clean energ,” said Rob Klee, commissioner of the Connecticut Department of Energy and Environmental Protection.

The EPA estimates the rules could result in about 1,400 premature deaths per year.

Last year the attorneys general of Connecticut and New York sued the EPA over pollution that drifts into their states from a coal-fired power plant in Pennsylvania. In June a federal court ordered the EPA to look into ways to reduce cross-state pollution.