WASHINGTON, D.C. – At the Fox Business Network Republican primary debate tonight, both Sen. Rand Paul and Gov. Bush attacked the Clean Power Plan. In response, LCV Senior Vice President of Campaigns Daniel J. Weiss issued the following statement:
“Climate action was resoundingly rejected on stage tonight. Both Rand Paul and Jeb Bush doubled-down on dirty fossil fuels and attacked the Clean Power Plan. They demonstrated a stunning disregard for the benefits of these critical safeguards, which protect the health of our families, grow the economy, and create jobs. These national carbon pollution limits have been embraced by a broad and diverse set of stakeholders—including utilities, public health experts, clean energy advocates and others. Meeting the global threat of climate change requires US leadership – but we didn’t see it from any of the candidates on stage tonight.”
Transcript from the Fox Business Network GOP debate
BARTIROMO: Sen. Paul, you are one of 15 Republicans to vote for an amendment which states that human activity contributed to climate change. President Obama has announced an aggressive plan to cut carbon emissions. At the same time, energy production in America has boomed. Is it possible to continue this boom and move toward energy self-sufficiency, while at the same time pursuing a meaningful climate change program?
SEN. PAUL: The first thing I would do as president is repeal the regulations that are hampering our energy that the president has put in place, including the Clean Power Act [sic]. While I do think man may have a role in our climate, I think nature also has a role. The planet’s 4.5 billion years old. We’ve been through geologic age through geologic age. We’ve had times when the temperature’s been warmer, we’ve had times when the temperature’s been colder, we’ve had times when the carbon in the atmosphere has been higher. We need to look before we leap. The President’s often fond of saying he wants a balanced solution, but we need to balance keeping the environment clean – we will have rules for that – but we’ve got to balance that with the economy. He’s devastated my state. I say the president is not only destroying Kentucky, he’s destroying the Democrat [sic] Party because nobody wants to associate with him. What we really need is somebody that understands we do need energy of all forms, and that means we will have solar and wind and hydro, but we will still have coal and we will have natural gas, and we’ve got to have an all of the above policy. But it would be a mistake to shut down all of our industries in the coal fields and shut down the coal power plants. If we did so, we’ll have a day we wake up and our some of big cities are very cold or very hot. It’s a big danger and shouldn’t do it. What we should do is say, we want all of the above, we want to free up the energy sector. Let people produce, let them drill, let them explore.
GOV. BUSH: We’ve had a 10% reduction in carbon emissions, and it isn’t because of Solyndra. It isn’t because of the central players in Washington, DC. It’s because we’ve had a great American success story. The explosion of natural gas, taking two existing technologies and applying it through innovation has created lower carbon emissions, lower energy costs. 40% of all the economic activity in the age of Obama has come from the energy sector and Hillary Clinton wants to suppress that. I think we ought to be expanding this. High growth is the path to lower carbon and more jobs. I know for a fact as governor of the state of Florida, we created the largest land purchasing programs and environmental cleanup programs because we had a growing economy.
GOV. BUSH: “On the regulatory side, I think we need to repeal every rule that Barack Obama has in terms of work-in-progress – everyone of them, and start over. For those that are already in existence, the regulation of the internet, we have to start over but we ought to do that. The Clean Power Act [sic], we ought to repeal that and start over on that. The Waters of the United States Act, which is going to be devastating for agriculture and many industry, we should repeal that we should repeal the rules because the economic costs of this far exceed the social benefit.”
The Clean Power Plan, The First-Ever National Effort To Address Carbon Pollution From Power Plants, Takes Aim At “Pollutants That Cause The Soot And Smog That Harm Health.” The Clean Power Plan is the “first-ever national standards that address carbon pollution from power plants.” It “cuts significant amounts of power plant carbon pollution and the pollutants that cause the soot and smog that harm health.” [EPA Fact Sheet, 8/3/15]
EPA’s Clean Power Plan Helps Avoid Up To 3,600 Premature Deaths And 90,000 Asthma Attacks In Children. According to an August 2015 White House Fact sheet, “The Clean Power Plan … will reduce premature deaths from power plant emissions by nearly 90 percent in 2030 compared to 2005 and decrease the pollutants that contribute to the soot and smog and can lead to more asthma attacks in kids by more than 70 percent. The Clean Power Plan will also avoid up to 3,600 premature deaths, lead to 90,000 fewer asthma attacks in children, and prevent 300,000 missed work and school days.” [White House Fact Sheet, accessed 8/3/15]
Clean Power Plan Will Create Up To 273,000 Jobs By 2040. On April 14, 2015, the University of Maryland’s Department of Economics released a report titled, “Assessment of the Economy-wide Employment Impacts of EPA’s Proposed Clean Power Plan.” The report stated, “This document presents an economy-wide assessment of the employment impacts associated with the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA’s) proposed Clean Power Plan .. this analysis estimates a net gain of 74,000 jobs in 2020, and projects that these annual employment gains will increase to 196,000 to 273,000 jobs between 2025 and 2040. These results represent a 0.1-0.2 percent increase in civilian employment.” According to Inside Climate News, the report is based on a “trusted, sophisticate model.” [University of Maryland Dept. of Economics Report, 4/14/15; Inside Climate News, 4/21/15]
Clean Power Plan Reduces The Average American Family’s Electricity Bill. The EPA’s Clean Power Plan will “reduce energy waste and improve efficiency” and is expected to cut average electricity bills by 7 percent. In other words, “by 2030, the average American family will save $7 on their electric bill every month.” [EPA Fact Sheet, 8/3/15]