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  • Electric power plants are the largest source of the dangerous carbon pollution that is driving climate change and extreme weather. But, astonishingly, there are no limits on carbon pollution.
  • The EPA has both the authority and the responsibility to reduce carbon pollution under the Clean Air Act, and it should move forward to help protect future generations.
  • NRDC's plan to cut carbon pollution from existing power plants, in which states and their power companies meet national carbon standards using flexible approaches to conform to state-specific limits, could create 210,000 new jobs nationwide.

President Obama has laid out a comprehensive National Climate Plan to curb pollution, expand clean energy, and make our communities more resilient. The plan also presents a tremendous economic opportunity for businesses, communities, states, and our country. In December 2012, NRDC unveiled a proposal showing how the EPA can cut carbon pollution from the nation's power plants 26 percent by 2020 and 34 percent by 2025. These carbon reductions would generate between $25 billion and $60 billion in benefits through avoided climate change impacts and avoided pollution-related illnesses and deaths. They would cost industry about $4 billion, or just 1 percent of revenues. That means we could see up to $15 in climate and health benefits for every $1 invested.

Because the bulk of investment in energy efficiency focuses on making our buildings and homes more efficient, such investment creates a lot of jobs that require a broad range of homegrown expertise, in industries that have been especially hard hit by the recent recession. There will be greater demand for electricians, heating/air conditioning installers, carpenters, construction equipment operators, roofers, insulation workers, industrial truck drivers, construction managers, and building inspectors.

Learn more about how state economies can benefit from cutting carbon pollution:

carbon pollution standards

Arkansas

Colorado

Iowa

Missouri

last revised 3/26/2014

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