The Trump administration should consider issuing a formal, nationwide moratorium on building new fossil fuel power plants, according to a letter sent Thursday by three prominent environmental activists.
The letter, signed by three environmental organizations and environmental organizations in the state, says the administration’s proposed rule-making process “may well be inadequate to effectively address the climate threat posed by fossil fuel burning.”
In particular, the letter points to the Trump administration’s recent announcement that it is “reviewing the federal rulemaking process and evaluating additional measures that might assist in the reduction of carbon pollution in the United States.”
The administration’s proposal is to set a goal of a 100 percent reduction in carbon emissions from existing power plants by 2030.
The White House says the goal will be reached in 2025, and that it will continue to monitor and evaluate the state’s emissions over the next several years.
The letter said the administration has indicated that it wants to set emissions targets that are based on “sustainable” levels of emissions.
While the letter did not name the groups, the Southern Environmental Law Center, a Washington-based advocacy group that signed the letter, said in a statement that it has “serious concerns” about the administration “taking action to limit greenhouse gas emissions.”
The letter was signed by the Sierra Club, 350.org, Earthjustice, 350 Action, and others.
The Sierra Club said in an emailed statement that the administration is “playing politics with the future of our country,” and that the letter was “a veiled attack on President Trump.”
The Sierra Club is also challenging the EPA’s rules for building new coal plants.
The White House did not immediately respond to a request for comment.
The president’s climate change action plan was approved by the Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee earlier this month.
The bill includes several recommendations, including an increase in the number of public comment periods for new rules and the establishment of an advisory panel that would advise the administration on how to respond to the challenges posed by climate change.