3/31/2017 — 

WASHINGTON, DC – In an effort to mitigate potentially devastating effects of climate change, preserve clean energy jobs, reduce pollution, and decrease dependence on foreign energy sources, U.S. Senators Jack Reed (D-RI) and Sheldon Whitehouse (D-RI) have joined with Michael Bennet (D-CO) and more than 30 of their Senate colleagues in introducing legislation to rescind President Trump’s executive order to dismantle the Clean Power Plan (CPP) and reverse several landmark U.S. initiatives to reduce dangerous emissions that contribute to climate change.    

The Clean Air, Healthy Kids Act seeks to block federal agencies from implementing the actions outlined in the executive order, which was signed by President Trump on Tuesday.  These actions include rolling back the Clean Power Plan, which is currently on track to provide $54 billion in climate and health benefits each year, prevent thousands of premature deaths and asthma attacks in children, reduce electricity bills for homes and businesses, and create thousands of good-paying clean tech jobs. 

“In signing this executive order, President Trump can bring back more smog, but he can’t bring back the coal jobs he promised.  The fact is the rest of the world is moving forward with cleaner energy and clean tech jobs, and the President’s move will actually put the United States at a competitive disadvantage.  This executive order will reverse the progress of thoughtful and deliberate environmental policies that seek to limit pollution, promote renewable energy, mitigate the effects of global warming, and protect our public health,” said Senator Reed.  “Instead of undoing environmental protections and denying climate change, the President should work with Congress to take action, protect future generations, and build a brighter economic future.”

"The Clean Power Plan was developed to protect Americans’ health, slow the effects of climate change, save us money on energy costs, and create‎ jobs," said Senator Whitehouse, Ranking Member of the Environment and Public Works Subcommittee on Clean Air and Nuclear Safety and Co-Chair of the Senate Climate Action Task Force.  "This legislation blocks President Trump’s reckless attempt to take away reasonable protections that benefit Rhode Islanders and our economy."‎ ‎

Announced by the Obama Administration in August 2015, the CPP was carefully designed to improve public health, reduce energy bills for families and businesses, and combat the effects of climate change while creating good paying jobs in the clean energy sector.  The plan was estimated to cut pollution emissions from fossil fuel power plants, the largest source of carbon pollution, by 32 percent below 2012 levels by 2030.  Additionally, the EPA estimates that the CPP would save thousands of lives and prevent tens of thousands of cases of pollution-related illness.

In addition to Bennet, Reed, and Whitehouse, the legislation was cosponsored by the following senators:

Richard Blumenthal (D-CT)
Cory Booker (D-NJ)
Ben Cardin (D-MD)
Tom Carper (D-DE)
Chris Coons (D-DE)
Catherine Cortez Masto (D-NV)
Dick Durbin (D-IL)
Dianne Feinstein (D-CA)
Al Franken (D-MN)
Kirsten Gillibrand (D-NY)
Kamala Harris (D-CA)
Maggie Hassan (D-NH)
Martin Heinrich (D-NM)
Mazie Hirono (D-HI)
Amy Klobuchar (D-MN)
Patrick Leahy (D-VT)
Edward Markey (D-MA)
Bob Menendez (D-NJ)
Jeff Merkley (D-OR)
Chris Murphy (D-CT)
Patty Murray (D-WA)
Bill Nelson (D-FL)
Bernie Sanders (D-VT)
Brian Schatz (D-HI)
Jeanne Shaheen (D-NH)
Tom Udall (D-NM)
Chris Van Hollen (D-MD)
Elizabeth Warren (D-MA)
Ron Wyden (D-OR)

A copy of the bill can be found here