The EPA promotes clean air and land and water in America and makes sure Federal laws concerning this are enforced fairly. The Trump Administration's EPA has proposed a new rule meant to replace one by the Obama Administrations.
The Obama era rule announced in 2015 was called the Clean Power Plan.
It was the first time the Federal government set limits on the amount of carbon dioxide that U.S. power plants are allowed to give off. The Trump era proposal announced this week is called the Affordable Clean Energy Rule. It allows states to set their own plans to reduce the green house gas emissions their power plans give off.
Why does is matter whether the Federal government or the individual states set the rules about this.
Well critics of the Obama Administration's plans say it went too far. That it gave the Federal government too much authority to regulate what power plants across the country do that it costs the power industry money and jobs and that it raised energy prices which especially hurt low and middle income Americans. The Supreme Court put a hold on this plan after 28 states sued the Federal government to stop it.
Critics of the Trump Administration's plan say it won't go far enough. That it will give states too much authority to regulate their power plants. That it will allow power companies to increase their carbon emissions which most scientists blame for contributing to climate change. And that it will lead to more illnesses related to pollution.
Environmental groups are expected to sue to stop the new rule. Many utility companies nationwide have been switching to natural gas and other forms of power. So it's possible that neither Federal plan would have a major effect.