In an article at Forbes' Sustainable Capitalism blog, Mindy Lubber of Ceres - a nonprofit whose coal is "moving corporations and investors toward a more sustainable global economy" - gets it exactly right on the latest EPA clean air standards for "last century’s dirty and inefficient power plants." The challenge, according to Lubber, is simple:
It’s time for our electric power industry to embrace the 21st century with modern, cleaner power generation sources like wind and solar, natural gas and energy efficiency—and leave the 20th century’s increasingly uneconomic coal plants behind.
Unfortunately, as Lubber points out, "opponents are voicing the same tired argument that power companies need a lot more time to comply, even though they’ve known the rule was coming for more than a decade." That, of course, is "nonsense," as "[s]tudies show the EPA rule is technologically feasible, provides clear economic benefits and offers power companies an opportunity to modernize their aging fleets."
The bottom line, according to Mindy Lubber?
...the rule aims to protect our nation’s most vulnerable citizens. Mercury is a nerve poison that is especially harmful to children and developing fetuses. Total healthcare savings from the rule are estimated at $3.4 to $4.5 billion, no chump change in this cost-conscious era.
It is, indeed. Now, we just need to seize it!