As his Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) delivers its latest plans, President Donald Trump is heading into the heart of the coal country to deliver his promise.
Trump will join supporters in Charleston, West Virginia, a major coal producing state, to highlight his administration's proposal to allow states to set their own emissions standards for coal-fueled power plants.
The move could reverse Obama's efforts to combat climate change and marks the fulfilment of a campaign promise at the heart of his popularity in coal-producing states like West Virginia.
The Obama-era clean power plan imposed the first-ever national carbon pollution limits on coal plants and aimed to cut power sector CO2 emissions by 32% by 2030, compared with 2005 levels. However, after legal challenges by a coalition of states, it was paused by the supreme court in 2016 and has never come into force.
Trump also has directed his Energy Secretary Rick Perry to take steps to boost struggling coal-fired and nuclear power plants to keep them open, warning that impending retirement of power plants that rely on coal and nuclear power would harm the nation’s power grid.
The move is just the latest effort by the Trump administration to revive an ailing coal industry and strip climate change regulations established by the Obama administration. The Trump administration has also announced plans to withdraw from the Paris climate accords, calling it an unfair deal for Americans.