Extreme weather events, such as the storm that tore apart Brownville and other Maine towns in late June, are on the rise.

Scientists warn that global warming will bring even more extreme weather in the future, and power plants are the largest U.S. source of the carbon pollution that causes global warming.

Maine has been a leader in efforts to reduce carbon pollution. Our participation in the Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative, the first-in-the-nation program to limit carbon pollution from power plants, has been a key part of Maine’s strategy to reduce pollution from fossil fuels and shift to clean energy.

RGGI also has produced tens of millions of dollars’ worth of investments in clean energy while reducing pollution. By strengthening RGGI, we can keep our state on a path to a cleaner energy future.

To adequately address this issue, we must have a solution on a national level, as well. President Barack Obama and the Environmental Protection Agency have proposed the first-ever carbon pollution standards for new power plants — a truly historic step toward cleaning up the largest single source of carbon pollution, and helping to guard against even more extreme weather for Maine and the country.

A record number of Americans already have spoken out in support of the proposed standards, and I urge the EPA to finish the job on these standards and also develop standards for existing power plants. Our safety and our environment are depending on it.

Ben Seel, Environment Maine


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