MCE Statement on President Obama's Carbon Rule

The Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) new carbon rule released on Monday, June 2nd will result in a 30% reduction from 2005 levels in nationwide power plant carbon emissions by 2030. The new rule outlines state-by-state reductions that cumulatively result in the 30% reduction. For Missouri, this means a 21% reduction from our 2012 emission levels, which would help us prevent over 15 million metric tons of harmful carbon pollution from entering the atmosphere and disrupting our global climate system.

This is an attainable goal for Missouri and a first step in addressing carbon pollution and climate change, and we will urge the EPA to consider a more stringet standard for Missouri when it finalizes this rule to help the state capture its true carbon reduction potential.  Missouri power plants released 87 million tons of carbon pollution in 2011, equal to the annual emissions of 18 million cars.  This figure ranks Missouri as the 8th highest carbon emitter in the nation.  As a state dependent on coal for 80% of our electriciy, we have ample opportunities to increase our energy efficiency numbers and our usage of renewable energy sources. Missouri has already made streat strides in growing and promoting the solar industry.  We have the technology and manufacturing capability and are producing parts for wind turnbines here in Missouri.

Alof thcoaburned in Missouriimported froother states, draininover $1.4billion peyeafroour state’seconomanouhousehold budgets. Switching awafrofossifuels to renewablsources and ramping up efficiency efforts can create thousandonejobin MissouriBy the enof 2014, the Missouri solaindustry wilhave created more than 3,70joband added $415 million to the state’s economy. Another 3,90jobs could be created by putting people to worin energy efficiency,according to recenanalysiby thNatural Resources DefensCouncil.Missouri.  We have only scratched the surface of what is possible with gains from energy efficiency.  Missouri can reach this 21 % reduction and go even further.  Limiting our carbon emissions sets Missouri up for increased job growth, fewer hospital visits, and a more stable comate, which benefit all Missourians. 

Increased temperaturearreal.The UniooConcerned Scientists evaluated temperatures over thlast 60 yearfor the Midwest and St.Louianfounheatwavehavincreased.  Asthmrates arhigher in Missouri, especiallin St. Louis, than imanother parts of the country. In 2011,there were more than 7,700 hospitaadmissionfoasthma,with aaverage cost of $14,300 for each stay. A known irritanfoasthma suffereriozone, which increases with higher temperatures. St. Louihas exceeded thlimits foground level ozone everyear that thlimihabeen in effect. Children arparticularlvulnerabltasthma,especiallin thhot summer months. Blimiting the carbowpump into thair we arhelpinmore children breathe easand enjoy thoutdoors. Continuing with a coal-heavapproach puts thhealtof Missouri’s children on thline. in frequency,intensitand durationHeatwaves havdirec timpactoouhealthour crops, anoulivelihoods.

Hazardous weather i2011 waresponsiblfor thdeathof 180 peopland caused $3.2billion in damage to property and crops. Drenching rainstormbroke precipitatiorecordin 17 counties. Even though warmer temperatures means a longer growing season, the NationaClimate Assessment predicts that crops such acorn and soybeans wilbdevastated bmorfrequenlatspring freezes. If we dnoacquickltlimiour carboemissionand address climate change, the Missouri we pasalonto thnext generation wilbdrasticalldifferent than thone we know todayContinuintburn fossifuels threatens Missouri’s expansivoahickorforests and endangerour wateresources. Increased temperatures will shift what species can survivin the Midwest and increased flooding will exacerbate erosion and runofinto ourstreamand rivers.

Labadie 001small

Thirulsignals a transitiofrom oureliancon dirtyunhealthcarbon dioxidemissions and will movMissourforwarinto a healthieand cleanefutureAs a society,whave a moraobligation to the next generation to pass along a livable planet. We know that without action we arsettinour grandchildren up for a future odangerous temperatures, massive crolosses, increased stormsfloodingand higher health costs. Theschangearalreadhappening nowThe necarbon limitare an opportunity to create a better Missouri. Th21reduction appeartbbased othEPA’s overly- conservative estimates of what is possiblin Missourgiveoucurreninfrastructurand resourcesrather than whascienctelluwreallneein ordetstabilizouclimateWarpleasethere wilfinallbstandardtlimidangeroucarbopollutioanwwilcontinutchallengour electeofficialtnojusmeethminimustandards, butgbeyond with evestronger reductionbased owhaibesfoouhumaand environmentahealth. Together we can make Missouri a leader in reducing carbon pollution and transitioning to a renewable, energy efficient economy that protects our health and our state for generations to come.

For More Information:

Contact:  Melissa Vatterott, Climate Outreach Coordinator, 314.727.0600 x. 111

To stay informed, join our carbon pollution email list by signing up for our e-alerts and selecting Climate Change.

Read the latest NRDC report on jobs and energy savings Missouri stands to gain with effective carbon pollution limits.

See how Missouri fared in the National Climate Assessment.

Login Form