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Office of the Vermont Attorney General

Attorney General Donovan Joins Coalition of Attorneys General Opposing Executive Order Dismantling Clean Power Plan

March 29, 2017

CONTACT: Nicholas Persampieri , Assistant Attorney General, (802) 828-3186

Vermont Attorney General T.J. Donovan joined a coalition of 23 states, cities, and counties opposing President Trump’s executive order that directs the Environmental Protection Agency to dismantle the Clean Power Plan rule.

The coalition includes the Attorneys General from Vermont, California, Connecticut, Delaware, Hawaii, Iowa, Illinois, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, New Mexico, New York, Oregon, Rhode Island, Virginia, Washington, and the District of Columbia, as well as the chief legal officers of the cities of Boulder (CO), Chicago (IL), New York (NY), Philadelphia (PA), and South Miami (FL), and the County of Broward (FL). The coalition issued the following statement:

“We strongly oppose President Trump’s executive order that seeks to dismantle the Clean Power Plan.

Addressing our country’s largest source of carbon pollution—existing fossil fuel-burning power plants—is both required under the Clean Air Act and essential to mitigating climate change’s growing harm to our public health, environments, and economies.

We won’t hesitate to protect those we serve—including by aggressively opposing in court President Trump’s actions that ignore both the law and the critical importance of confronting the very real threat of climate change.”

The Clean Power Plan is the culmination of a decade-long effort by partnering states to require mandatory cuts in the emissions of climate change pollution from fossil fuel-burning power plants under the Clean Air Act. The Clean Power Plan controls these emissions by setting limits on the amount of climate change pollution that power plants can emit. The rule for existing plants is expected to eliminate air pollution equivalent to more than 160 million cars a year – or 70 percent of the nation’s passenger cars.

EPA adopted the Clean Power Plan through a multi-year stakeholder process that drew heavily on the experience of states and utilities in reducing power plant greenhouse gas emissions. Climate change impacts to Vermont include increasingly severe storms that threaten human lives and property, and increasing temperatures that threaten the ski and maple industries. Vermont was a part of the coalition of 25 states, cities and counties, that intervened in defense of the Clean Power Plan against legal challenge in the D.C. Circuit Court of Appeals in 2015. A decision on this matter is expected soon.

Last modified: January 11, 2018