Florida is one of the ten biggest greenhouse gas emitters in the US. We are one of ten states that accounted for nearly half (48.76%) of all U.S. emissions in 2012!
According to the President's new Clean Power Plan, states can come up with their own plans to meet the new Clean Power goals, or if they don't, there’s a federal model that will be imposed. Compliance begins in 2022.
The goal is that by 2030, the US will achieve a 32 percent reduction in carbon emissions from levels measured in 2005.
Wouldn't it have been helpful for Florida to already have in place a plan to reduce carbon emissions? But, we do not.
The National Governors Association launched an initiative in March to help states study ways to comply with the carbon regulations. Four states––Utah, Pennsylvania, Missouri and Michigan––were selected to participate in a "policy academy."
To date, only one state so far has publicly refused to submit a plan: Oklahoma. Gov. Mary Fallin issued an executive order in April directing state agencies not to come up with a plan to cut carbon pollution. If Oklahoma ultimately refuses to submit a plan, the state will be required to comply with a federal plan.
Twelve states (so far) are suing the Environmental Protection Administration (EPA) over the Plan. Other states have created legislation making it more difficult to enact reductions.
Florida filed a bill in the House and in the Senate that would have required the Florida Department of Environmental Protection to submit a state plan for legislative approval before its submission to the EPA. Each of the bills failed.
Florida also failed to adopt a Resolution that would have urged the "US Congress to direct the EPA to revise its proposed regulations on carbon dioxide emissions from existing fossil fueled-fired electric generating units by extending the deadline for state plan submission to the EPA" and prohibiting the retirement of polluting units before the end of their engineering lifetime.The EPA rule sets emissions targets for states’ power sectors, designed differently for each state on how much electricity it generates from coal, oil, natural gas and renewables likes wind, solar and hydropower.
Will all of this be too little, too late?