Complying with the Obama administration’s Clean Power Plan would save the nation nearly US$40 billion a year by 2030—and a cumulative US$442 billion between now and then—according to a Georgia Institute of Technology study for the Alliance for Industrial Efficiency.
The Plan requires the U.S. power generation sector to reduce its carbon emissions 32% by 2030. It was stayed by the U.S. Supreme Court in February pending the resolution of a constitutional challenge before a lower court.
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Meeting its mandates would make American’s manufacturers “more competitive by improving the energy efficiency of their operations to cut their energy bills,” said the study’s author, Dr. Marilyn Brown. “An added benefit is that their carbon pollution would be cut simultaneously.” By contrast, a ‘business as usual’ course which resists the Plan’s mandate will push industrial energy bills up 44.2% over the next 15 years, Brown predicted.
“Transitioning to a low-carbon economy will also create opportunities for business growth. Many business owners and industry leaders are motivated not just by the ‘push’ of environmental regulation, but also by the ‘pull’ of potential cost savings, new customers, higher staff retention, and good publicity,” Brown remarked.
Separate studies conducted last year for the U.S. Energy Information Administration and the non-partisan Economic Policy Institute similarly concluded that the CPP’s costs would be relatively slight, and lead to the creation of 100,000 new jobs in the United States.