RENO, Nev. (MyNews4.com & KRNV) -- In the first proposal of its kind, Environmental Protection Agency Administrator Gina McCarthy said reducing carbon emissions will combat climate change and improve public health.
The plan suggests each state will work on its own plan to help reduce carbon pollution by 30-percent by the year 2030. Nevada has already reduced its carbon pollution by 20% between 2008 and 2011. In 2012, Nevada power plants emitted 15 million metric tons of carbon pollution.
"We're already ahead of the game on that," said Nevada Conservation Link Consultant Kyle Davis.
Davis cites that the state has its own standard to get a quarter of its energy from renewable resources by 2025, and other aggressive legislation. "Especially in the last [legislative] session, the passage of SB 123 which will shut down coal-fired power plants in the state. We're already well ahead of the curve."
NV Energy is in the process of shutting down coal-burning power plants and replacing them with 200 megawatts of solar power under the new law.
Some opponents believe the proposal is a war on coal, especially in states where coal is big business. "We're going to handicap ourselves. And kill jobs and opportunity," said Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Kentucky).
However, NV Energy tells News 4 they have been moving away from coal, and are reliant on natural gas and other renewable sources. "NV Energy is assessing the proposed EPA ruling for existing power plants and its impact to our customers," said Public Information Officer Faye Andersen.