Supreme Court decision must not stop Pennsylvania’s progress toward climate reductions

HARRISBURG, Feb. 10 – Despite the Supreme Court’s ruling placing a temporary stay on the Environmental Protection Agency’s Clean Power Plan, state Rep. Leanne Krueger-Braneky, D-Delaware, encouraged state officials to continue toward the goal of reduced carbon emissions.

“Though the Supreme Court may have temporarily delayed the Clean Power Plan, there is no reason that Pennsylvania cannot continue to plan and work toward becoming a leader in responding to climate change,” Krueger-Braneky said. “Power plants are America’s largest source of greenhouse gases, and especially in Pennsylvania where coal has dominated the energy sector in vast portions of our state, there is no reason to delay instituting strategies that rely more on environmentally responsible energy sources. Our health and the health of our children depend on it.”

The Supreme Court, in a 5-4 decision Tuesday, issued the stay on implementation of the Clean Power Plan. The decision prevents the EPA from taking further action to implement the plan until lower courts rule on multiple challenges brought by states across the country.

“Climate change is real, and the continued debate on that topic is only a smokescreen used to delay the change our state needs to help reduce carbon emissions and leave a cleaner planet for our children,” Krueger-Braneky said. “There is tremendous job creation potential for Pennsylvanians if we focus on clean energy industries. The energy sector and massive fossil fuel lobbyists know that clean energy is the future and will do everything they can to prevent that future from becoming reality. Pennsylvania cannot afford to put the interests of big oil and big coal ahead of the interests of our environment.”

The Washington, D.C. Circuit Court will begin hearing oral arguments on the Clean Power Plan in June.