New Hampshire and Maine have now joined with 23 other states in the battle to defend the Environmental Protection Agency’s Clean Power Plan.
The plan, which sets limits on the amount of pollutants fossil fuel power plants can emit, is under attack in federal court. Other states and industry groups have filed suits challenging the rule, which seeks to enforce the Clean Air Act.
New Hampshire’s Attorney General Joseph Foster said in a news release, “For many years, New Hampshire regulators and industry have worked together to address greenhouse gas emissions in a responsible and cost-effective manner through the Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative (RGGI) and by emphasizing the inclusion of renewables in our energy portfolio.
“The Clean Power Plan recognizes the value of these programs and will help bring the rest of the nation in line with reasonable greenhouse gas reduction goals.” The Clean Power Plan, when implemented over the next few years, is intended to reduce climate changing pollution by an amount equal to that emitted by 70 per cent of the nation’s cars, over 160 million.
Roger Wood spoke to Mandy Helwig, a staff attorney for the Conservation Law Foundation, based in Boston, which is also a member of the coalition. New Hampshire currently has two fossil fuel plants in operation, the Merrimack Station in Bow and the Schiller Plant in Portsmouth.
Schiller burns a combination of coal and wood, and some residents across the Piscataqua River in Maine claim it has caused them health problems. But owner Eversource, which is seeking to sell the plants, says that it is operating cleanly. All six New England states have joined the coalition. Vermont is the only state in the region without a fossil-fueled plant.
For IndepthNH.org, I’m Roger Wood