Oregon interests await Obama's climate plan

President Obama will announce what's said to be a sweeping climate change plan Tuesday morning.

President Obama will announce what's said to be a sweeping climate change plan Tuesday morning.

Oregon’s environmental interests are itching to hear more about what President Obama will say Tuesday morning when he fully reveals his climate change plan.

Obama plans to release a sweeping climate action plan that officials say would cut carbon pollution and advance clean energy solutions. The Reuters news agency reported Tuesday that the plan would limit carbon emissions from existing U.S. power plants, many of which are coal-fired. As such, coal industry interests are likely to oppose it.

“Oregon is already paying a price as global warming fuels more wildfires, damaging storms and dangerous heat waves,” said Sarah Higginbotham, Environment Oregon’s state director, in a release. “Protecting our children from even more devastating consequences demands bold leadership. President Obama realizes this and we hope his plan will truly begin to safeguard our children’s future.”

The coal debate has particularly consumed Oregon and Washington environmental and business interests over the last year. At the same time, power plants have no federal limits on the amount of carbon pollution they emit, according to Higginbotham.

“In addition to cleaning up carbon pollution from power plants, we will look for the president’s plan to advance energy efficiency measures and expand renewable energy,” she said.

Reuters said the proposals could include new incentives to boost renewable energy usage. However, the agency also pointed out that many Republicans question whether climate change is actually a threat to the planet and oppose regulatory actions no matter what the topic. Republicans control the U.S. House.

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