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State of the Debate
George Pyle
George Pyle has been a newspaper writer in Kansas, Utah, Upstate New York, and now Utah again, for more than 30 years - most of it as an editorial writer and columnist. Now on his second tour of duty on The Salt Lake Tribune Editorial Board, he has also done a stretch as a talk radio host, published a book on the ongoing flaws of U.S.agricultural policy and, in 1998, was a finalist for the Pulitzer Prize for Editorial Writing. His most active bookmarks are Andrew Sullivan, Christopher Hitchens and Tina Brown. And he still thinks the Internet can be used for intelligent conversation and uplifting ideas.

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George Frey/Bloomberg Coal’s share of electricity generation in the United States, such as at the Intermountain Power Plant outside Delta, has fallen to under 40 percent in the past decade, from 50 percent.
Pundits and wonks on new carbon limits ...

A chance to lead the way on climate change — Salt Lake Tribune Editorial

"Utah has been presented with an opportunity to lead, truly lead, on a matter of global importance for generations to come. All we have to do is seize the moment.

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"The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency Monday announced a new set of standards aimed at significantly reducing the amount of carbon dioxide American power plants pour into the atmosphere every year. It is a step that is necessary in order to head off a future where we see the planet heat up and the quality of life driven down, here and around the world. ...

" ... Utah will be expected to lower its per-kilowatt/hour carbon emissions by some 27 percent, slightly less than the national average of 30 percent, from its 2005 levels by the year 2030. And it has many ways, including some low-hanging fruit, to accomplish that goal.

"It can adopt the most recent energy-efficiency standards in its uniform building codes. It can push its existing power plants to be more efficient.

"Most important, Utah could fully embrace its potential for renewable energy sources, solar and wind, which could save money, create jobs and make the Beehive State a globally recognized example of how forward-thinking communities finally give up their addiction to dirty and doomed fossil fuels and move to the energy sources of the future. ..."

Utahns react to EPA call for cutting power plant carbon emissions 30% — Salt Lake Tribune

" ... Environmental groups and public health advocates flooded the airwaves and Internet with praise for the 645-page proposed rule, which faces a year of public comment and revision.

"The plan gives states latitude in crafting their own plans to achieve these reductions, yet pro-business critics were quick to blast it as ‘pure fantasy’ that would snuff out thousands of jobs.

" ‘It’s just another example of more expensive, big-government regulation, and less freedom for American businesses and American families,’ said Utah’s Rep. Chris Stewart, a Republican whose 2nd District covers southwest Utah and Salt Lake City. ‘The costs of this new regulation will be paid for by you and me in the form of increased power bills, fewer jobs, a decrease in the manufacturing sector, and more expensive energy efficient products.’ ... "

A huge majority of Americans support regulating carbon from power plants. And they’re even willing to pay for it. — The Fix | The Washington Post

Guess we know who did and didn’t watch "Cosmos" last night.

A guide to Obama’s new rules to cut carbon emissions from power plants — Brad Plumer | Vox.com

Remember when Republicans believed in climate change — Ezra Klein | Vox.com

The EPA’s emissions plan should be just the beginning — Washington Post Editorial

"The Obama administration has finally rolled out its centerpiece climate change policy. It is a praiseworthy, solid step, taken in the face of withering opposition. Even so, it is not enough. ..."

Less Carbon, More Energy — The New York Times [interactive graphic]

Here are the newspapers that think you’re an idiot — Jonathan Chait | New York

"The Obama administration just unveiled one of the most consequential and far-reaching proposals of this presidency. One might think that, for good or ill, this constitutes an important story. One would be about half-right. Some publications are covering this enormous policy story. Others find that way too boring and have moved on to the vital question of how will this affect the midterm elections? ..."

Copyright 2014 The Salt Lake Tribune. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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