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Is it responsible that America has no limits on carbon pollution from power plants?

The Earth’s climate is getting warmer, and humans are partly responsible. That’s not my opinion, that’s a fact supported by more than 97 percent of climate scientists. The outcome over the next 50 years and beyond could include massive heat waves, prolonged drought, extreme weather and the mass extinction of species.

There are a few key climate fights in action now.

The EPA has proposed America’s first-ever national limits on climate pollution from future power plants, and received nearly 4 million comments in support of this rule before the May 9 comment deadline.

On June 2, the EPA proposed similar rules limiting climate pollution from America’s existing power plants. This is significant, considering that U.S. power plants emit approximately 2.3 billion tons of heat-trapping carbon dioxide pollution each year, accounting for 40 percent of America’s CO2 pollution.

While virtually all climate scientists agree that human activities are warming the planet, one out of three members of Congress are stalwart, head-in-the-sand climate deniers — and many more hide behind other excuses to avoid addressing this threat.

In spite of the fact that seven out of 10 Americans support federal regulation of power plant emissions, Congress is launching a seemingly endless barrage of attacks against these common-sense solutions, putting our communities at risk. The House has already passed the so-called “Electricity Security and Affordability Act,” H.R. 3826, which would create a giant utility industry loophole in our clean air laws, and would allow virtually unlimited carbon pollution from power plants.

The good news is we can do something about it, while helping the economy. We’ve already made a great start by making our cars and trucks more efficient, while starting to limit pollution from the dirtiest power plants, the chief contributor of America’s climate change pollution. To prevent the devastating effects of the climate crisis, we should all support these efforts.

— Michelle Retz is a naturopathic physician who lives in Mesa.


  1. Repeating untruths will not make the issue fact. The amount of warming that man is causing is minute but the amount of money we are spending to try and reduce carbon dioxide is huge. It will destroy our economy and reduce our quality of life. One volcanic eruption will wipe out any possible benefits we will have received by reducing man caused carbon dioxide. Our power needs will become unreliable and extremely expensive. Climate changes over time and always has, and always will. We do not yet have reliable alternatives to fossil fuels. If we did, the free market would be addressing those alternatives. We are throwing out the baby with the bath water. People are believing what they hear just because they keep hearing it. This article, as many others, misrepresents the problem.

  2. Why yes, let’s put limits on carbon dioxide emissions from power plants. Then, after however many days it takes for the plant to reach the limit, it must shut down for the remainder of the year. Why didn’t someone think of this sooner?

  3. Yes, it is entirely responsible under the circumstances. Limiting our CO2 emissions would simply drive more of our industries to countries like China which not only don’t limit CO2 but also don’t require capture of particulates or SO2. There is nothing to be gained for anyone by shooting ourselves in the head and we are doing too much of that already. There is no point in playing Chicken Little over CO2 while rejecting things like nuclear power that might actually help and focusing on impractical ideas like windmills that make their backers rich but don’t provide a reliable, economic source of power. We can’t solve real problems without fixing the corruption in Washington first.

  4. Dr. Retz identifies a global problem but advocates for local austerity measures. Ironically her LTE is titled “Is it Responsible.” High school chemistry shows us that CO(2) is not an ideal greenhouse gas, it is the left’s du jour compound to attack because CO(2) is synonymous with capitalism. Water vapor is a much better holder of heat than carbon dioxide. But, most scientist can concede the point that CO(2) levels are rising and temperature is rising. SOME scientists believe they may have a causal link between the two, but much more data and testing is needed because the rock record shows that earth at one time had a much higher CO(2) concentration, but the overall heat of the planet was less. As such, CO(2) doesn’t seem to be the catalyst that SOME scientists advocate. Left-leaning POLITICAL scientists seem to universally agree that CO(2) is evil and causing the earth to warm. But, we should do more to curb energy use with a large CO(2) by-product, or invest in industries that take more CO(2) out of the atmosphere.

  5. Michelle Retz is a naturopathic physician

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