Wyomingites Question Lawmakers on Lack of Clean Power Plan Reaction

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LeResche: Clean power plan: If Montana can, why can’t Wyoming?

Casper Star Tribune, November 30, 2014

The apocryphal explanation for the rise of the Japanese auto industry — and the accompanying fall of Detroit — has it that when the U.S. government established fuel economy standards for motor vehicles in 1975, “Japan hired 1,000 engineers but Detroit hired 1,000 attorneys.”

Wyoming seems determined to play a starring role in an unfortunate repeat performance of Detroit’s big, bullheaded blunder.

In June, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) published proposed standards to reduce carbon pollution nationwide. They call it the “Clean Power Plan,” and have constructed it to, according to EPA, provide “all the power we need, with less of what we don’t need: pollution.”

The Clean Power Plan is no list of federal dictates – no one-size-fits-all set of rules. Rather, it proposes goals for each state, outlines techniques states might choose to advance toward those goals, and asks each state to craft its own road forward. Given Wyoming’s great reliance on coal, EPA suggests a very modest goal for our state: a mere 19 percent increase in carbon efficiency in the next 15 years, which is far less than the 30 percent average nationally.

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