US SIF Statement on Clean Power Plan Replacement Rule

US SIF: The Forum for Sustainable and Responsible Investment's statement in response to the Trump administration's final rule to replace the Clean Power Plan.

WASHINGTON, DC,– Lisa Woll, CEO of US SIF: The Forum for Sustainable and Responsible Investment released the following statement today in response to the Trump administration's final rule to replace the Clean Power Plan. The Clean Power Plan was aimed at cutting carbon emissions from power plants. The Plan was one of the key initiatives of the Obama Administration in order to make progress in fighting climate change. US SIF fully supported the original Clean Power Plan. We are opposed to this “replacement” which guts key provisions of the Plan and does nothing to make our environment cleaner or healthier.

Electricity generation is the second leading source of carbon emissions in the United States (behind transportation). The final rule released today takes away the federal government's authority to set emissions reduction targets across the power sector. Instead, the rule calls for plant-by-plant regulation, which will allow dirty, older and less efficient coal plants to remain in operation longer and to continue to pollute the air Americans breathe.

US SIF has consistently supported federal policy to reduce the amount of carbon going into the atmosphere. This “replacement rule” flies in the face of established science andthreatens Americans' health. 

It also ignores market signals. Renewable sources of energy are competitive with coal; US SIF research has documented that US investors now consider climate change concerns across $3 trillion in investments. Climate change is in the top three issues of concern to money managers and institutional investors and the primary driver of the European Union's Sustainable Finance Plan. This gutting of the Clean Power Plan is out of step with concerns of Americans and the global community.

The rule sends the wrong signal to the investment community, the American people and America's international partners. Instead of artificially propping up outdated technology through regulatory incentives, the Administration should be driving innovation including investment in clean energy sources and leading the international efforts to curb climate change.