Protecting our kids: Asheville residents call for limits to carbon pollution

This blog was written by Jennifer Rennicks, former Senior Director of Policy & Communications at the Southern Alliance for Clean Energy.

Guest Blog | October 30, 2013 | Climate Change, Coal, Energy Policy

Tonight, dozens of concerned citizens gathered at a Citizens’ Climate Hearing in Asheville, NC to voice support  for the Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) proposed rule to limit carbon dioxide (CO2) from new fossil fueled power plants.

This event, hosted by the Cathedral of All Souls, Southern Alliance for Clean Energy, Climate Parents, Sierra Club, Western North Carolina Alliance and Western North Carolina Green Congregations, provided a forum for community leaders, parents, and even children to share their perspective on carbon pollution and urge EPA to finalize these rules and move towards regulating existing sources of climate pollution. View photos of this event here.

One attendee spoke eloquently about the reason for establishing such rules in the first place:

“I challenge all of you, and the people at EPA, to write a letter to your great grandchild or your great grand niece or nephew, and tell them about your lifestyle today. Tell them about what you do everyday, and what you’ve done to bring this on. Because we’re all part of the problem and we can all be part of the solution.”

The youngest speaker, a seventh grader, implored EPA not to “listen to the fossil fuel companies who want to make more money, instead of protecting our beautiful earth and our future.”

A convocation preceded this hearing, which coincided with the national Day of Remembrance for Superstorm Sandy and other extreme weather events fueled by climate pollution.

When fully implemented, these new rules will be a first step in President Obama’s Climate Action Plan to hold polluters accountable, as there is currently no limit on how much carbon can be emitted from power plants. Even more importantly, the president has directed EPA begin developing a rule to regulate carbon pollution from existing power plants, which emit more than two billion tons of CO2 emission annually.

EPA is accepting comments on this proposed rule until the end of the year. Like the children who came to the hearing, you can make your voice heard. You still have time to let EPA know you support the Carbon Pollution Rule for new power plants.

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