Gina McCarthy, the head of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, said today that while she is disappointed about the recent U.S. Supreme Court stay of the clean power plan – progress will still be made combating climate change.
“Sure. I really wanted to be the one to sign that very first state plan approval,” McCarthy said at the prestigious IHS CERAWeek in Houston. “But, does it slow down this country’s transition to a low carbon future? Absolutely not.”
“The stay does not overturn years of effort and state, federal and stakeholder collaboration on the Clean Power Plan. We now understand this landscape incredibly well. We’ve developed partnerships that we know will endure – within and between states and across the utility industry. And because of the network of relationships that arose through this process, many more decision-makers and investors understand the range of opportunities for making progress,” McCarthy said.
“The stay does not preclude states, tribes, and utilities from continuing to act on climate. In fact, many have already said that they’re going to keep moving forward. Virginia, Pennsylvania, Connecticut, Delaware, New York, Vermont, Washington and others all stood up within 24 hours of the stay decision and said that they are moving forward,” she said.
McCarthy said that overall, Obama administration policies are succeeding in pivoting the nation’s energy economy to a more sustainable future. More than 100,000 megawatts of solar and wind power will be installed in America in the next five years, McCarthy predicted.
That will reduce greenhouse gas emission in this country by 10 percent, she said.
“This is exactly the kind of market momentum we’ve been thinking about and hoping for,” she said.