The Clean Power Plan, which led a short but eventful life, was killed by an Executive Order signed by President Donald Trump at the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) on Tuesday. A few of the Clean Power Plan’s most ardent admirers may insist that it still has life, and in some technical sense they are right—even the administration concedes that it will have to work painstakingly through the notice and comment rulemaking process to review and redo the rule, and that there will be litigation once they proceed.
But everyone knows these are mere formalities, with the end result sure to be a rule that looks nothing at all like its predecessor (or perhaps no rule at all). And so the centerpiece of the Obama administration’s climate action plan is now well on its way to becoming a case study for policy historians rather than something industry or state government needs to worry about complying with.
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