Barack Obama thinks about his political legacy. Domestically, one thing remains above all else: the health reform. But he also wants to go down in history as a climate champion. There is a catch, however. (c) proplanta
He wanted to officially announce the new climate targets on Monday. According to this, power plants would have to reduce their pollutant emissions by 32 percent by 2030 compared to 2005, reported the “New York Times” on Sunday. If the resolutions are implemented, hundreds of coal-fired power plants would have to close, writes the newspaper. There is already strong resistance from the Republicans.
Obama himself spoke of the "biggest, most important step in combating climate change that we have ever taken". Climate change can no longer be denied. The fight against greenhouse gases could not be postponed to the next generation, he said in a video published on Facebook.
The initiative should also be a courageous target for the climate summit in Paris at the end of the year, if the world, after years of hesitation, wants to take decisive steps against greenhouse gases and global warming. Obama is also about his legacy, wrote the New York Times.
With the requirements, Obama wants to significantly tighten the provisions from 2014. Energy companies are being called upon to convert more to wind and solar energy or to switch from coal to natural gas, the newspaper writes. However, the individual US states would continue to have leeway for their energy policy.
There is likely to be considerable opposition from Republicans and a number of US states to the plans. Prosecutors from around a dozen US states are already planning legal steps, according to media reports. The dispute is likely to escalate to the Supreme Court, the highest US court, writes the New York Times.
Senate Republican majority leader Mitch McConnell immediately rejected Obama's proposals as unrealistic and stifling growth. He called on the governors of all 50 US states in a letter not to follow the plans, as CNN reported. Republican presidential candidate Marco Rubio criticized millions of Americans in the future with higher electricity costs.
Obama had already presented himself as a climate pioneer in the 2008 election campaign, but then quickly gave up. As a major domestic political achievement, it has so far been able to demonstrate above all the health reform. Climate protection is to become another trademark of his presidency, which will end in January 2017. (dpa)