The Clean Air Act requires the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to take steps to reduce air pollution that harms the public's health. This includes global warming emissions, which the EPA has found to endanger public health.
Today power plants are allowed to dump unlimited amounts of carbon pollution into the atmosphere — there are no rules in effect that limit their emissions of carbon dioxide, the primary driver of global warming. Now, for the first time, the EPA is developing new power plant carbon standards that will reduce carbon emissions from existing power plants.
These historic standards, known as the Clean Power Plan, are a centerpiece of the president's Climate Action Plan and represent the most significant opportunity in years to help curb the growing consequences of climate change.