Alabama needs action to curb climate change, environmentalists say

Calls for Alabama to decrease carbon footprint after SCOTUS ruling (Source: WSFA 12 News)
Published: Jul. 8, 2022 at 6:51 PM CDT
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MONTGOMERY, Ala. (WSFA) - Environmentalists are calling upon leaders and Alabamians to be more conscious of the state’s carbon emissions. This is after the Supreme Court issued a ruling that the Environmental Protection Agency, or EPA, does not have the authority to regulate greenhouse gas emissions from power plants.

With each day seemingly hotter than the next, activists say climate change is here, and they’re worried. Catherine Flowers founded the Center for Rural Enterprise and Environmental Justice.

“Heat index of 110 will become more common if we do not reduce emissions,” Flowers predicts, adding that the Supreme Court’s decision that limits the EPA’s regulatory power over carbon emissions won’t help with that reduction.

“Pretty much limits the role that the EPA can play in dealing with regulating pollution,” Flowers explained of the high court’s action.

The EPA, in partnership with states, can still regulate criteria pollutants like nitrogen oxides. This new ruling says the agency will be limited in regulating carbon emissions.

“That means that the power shifts not only away from the departments and agencies to, to the state and local government,” said Flowers.

So now, more than ever, Flowers says action needs to be taken. Michael Hansen with the Greater Birmingham Alliance to Stop Pollution is in agreement.

“Large manufacturing and industrial users of electricity, they’re going to need to help with this,” Hansen stated. “They’re going to need to step up to the plate and demand cleaner electricity from the power companies.”

Hansen believes Alabamians can make a difference, too.

“Reusable water bottles, reusable utensils, metal straws, help,” Hansen noted, adding that “you can do big things and small things that collectively make a big impact.”

Hansen also believes state leaders can help reduce those emissions and that voters have the power to choose the ones who will.

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