Thursday, May 05, 2016

Clean Power What?  Most Americans Haven't Heard of Climate Rule

Coal power plant smokestacks with tailings (Photo Credit: alohaspirit/iStock) Click to Enlarge.
The Obama administration's Clean Power Plan, considered by many to be the most far-reaching climate regulation ever set forth by the U.S. government, has barely registered in the minds of most American voters.

A new national poll found 7 in 10 voters have heard "just a little or nothing at all" about EPA's regulation to rein in carbon emissions from power plants.

In a different poll of Texas voters that was also released yesterday, 85 percent of respondents surveyed had not "seen, read, or heard of a federal policy called the Clean Power Plan."

Steven Kull, director of the Program for Public Consultation at the University of Maryland's School of Public Policy, which conducted the national poll, said it didn't shock him that EPA's climate rule hasn't made waves among average Americans.

"It's sort of blandly titled," said Kull.  "I don't think the reporting on it has been very extensive.  It hasn't gotten into the elections, and so I don't find it so surprising."

Texas Clean Energy Coalition chairman and former Republican state Sen. Kip Averitt, whose group conducted the Texas poll, had a similar reaction.

"It's one of those issues for inside the ballpark," Averitt said.  "I think most citizens on the street are not aware of regulatory proceedings and judicial proceedings at that level."

The national poll, which was backed by the group Voice of the People, found that the majority of Americans -- 7 in 10 -- feels reducing greenhouse gases from energy production should be a "high priority."

Opinions on the issue were split along partisan lines, however, with 91 percent of Democrats polled saying reducing greenhouse gases should be a high priority while only 44 percent of Republicans said it should be a high priority.

Read more at Clean Power What?  Most Americans Haven't Heard of Climate Rule

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