June 2, 2014; Washington, DC – The Jewish Council for Public Affairs and Coalition on the Environment and Jewish Life today welcomed the Obama Administration’s announcement of a new rule limiting carbon emissions. The rule, written by the Environmental Protection Agency, will cut carbon emissions from power plants by 30%.
“A reduction in the carbon pollution caused by the production of energy from coal is absolutely needed today in America,” said JCPA President and COEJL co-chair Rabbi Steve Gutow. “With this rule, we are setting an example to the world that just as we have contributed to climate change, so can we take the lead in halting it. Firm steps like this will take pollutants out of our air that have damaged the health of our children and environment alike. Environmentalism, in addition to a moral and religious prerogative, is a question of responsibility. We can ignore it for the sake of short term convenience, or we can accept it and ensure breathable air and a healthy planet for generations to come.”
“Understanding that we are stewards of our environment, the Jewish community has advocated for less pollution and cleaner energy. This rule will give us both,” said JCPA Chair Susan W. Turnbull. “Limiting the amount of carbon pollution we can release into our air is an acknowledgement of our responsibility to and dependence on the environment. Moreover, by allowing trades under the cap, the new rule is being implemented in a way that encourages innovation towards cleaner energy. Powerful policies like these are necessary if we are to seriously address climate change.”