|President Barack Obama has assured environmentalists that his administration is serious about reducing greenhouse gas emissions. But a new rule crafted by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) contains a loophole big enough to drive a dump truck of coal through it.
The new regulation will require all power plants that use fossil fuels to emit only 1,000 pounds of carbon dioxide for every megawatt-hour of electricity produced.
The catch, however, is that this pollution cap will apply only to new power plants that break ground more than a year from now. All existing ones, including those decades old, will be exempt, even though they produce more than 40% of carbon emissions.
This exemption has not been enough for coal-energy supporters to get behind the rule.