North Carolina is among 28 states asking the U.S. Supreme Court to halt federal rules limiting carbon emissions from power plants while the rules are challenged in lower courts.
A federal appeals court in the District of Columbia last week refused to block the Clean Power Plan, the cornerstone of President Obama’s climate-change policy.
Gov. Pat McCrory’s administration has cited a study predicting the rules will increase residential power bills by $434 a year by 2020.
“This clear federal overreach will mean higher electricity bills for North Carolina families and small businesses,” McCrory said in a statement Wednesday. “North Carolina is a leader in protecting its air quality and keeping energy prices affordable for hard working families and employers.”
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Protesters took to the streets in Charlotte last month before a hearing on the state’s plan to comply with the federal rules.
The Department of Environmental Quality crafted a plan that is limited to improving how efficiently coal-fired power plants operate. The plan ignores two other potential solutions – increased reliance on cleaner-burning natural gas and renewable energy – that DEQ has argued can’t legally be applied.
Green-energy advocates predict that the Environmental Protection Agency will reject the North Carolina plan because it does little to reduce carbon emissions.