FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Statements from Companies and Investors in Support of EPA’s Clean Power Plan in Wake of Supreme Court Ruling
The business and investor statements below are in response to the U.S. Supreme Court's recent stay on the Environmental Protection Agency's Clean Power Plan. The plan aims to reduce U.S. power plant carbon pollution by 30 percent by 2030. Read a response from Ceres President Mindy Lubber here or read about the overwhelming support from over 365 businesses and investors here.
“We’re disappointed with the action by the Court. We believe EPA has ample legal authority to pursue the Clean Power Plan. In addition, EPA has taken a measured and reasonable approach to pursuing GHG reductions, allowing states a great degree of flexibility in meeting the CPP targets over an extended compliance period between 2022 and 2030. PG&E will continue to support the Clean Power Plan and will move forward with the many steps we are taking to support California’s commitments to reduce greenhouse gases.” − Melissa Lavinson, Vice President of Federal Affairs and Policy, and Chief Sustainability Officer, PG&E Corporation
“Despite the Supreme Court’s decision, National Grid still strongly supports EPA’s Clean Power Plan. We stand by our belief that the CPP is not only reasonable and achievable, but imperative to meeting the nation’s greenhouse gas reduction commitment established at COP21. As we continue to stress with our customers and industry partners, tomorrow’s power grid and energy supply chain must look different than today’s. Climate change is a global imperative, and we must find ways to transition our energy industry into a decarbonized future. That means every player—including system operators, generators, distributors, and policy makers—must collaborate at a level our country has never seen before.” – Dean Seavers, President, National Grid U.S.
“Levi Strauss & Co. was proud to join 365 other companies and investors in support of the Clean Power Plan last year. We are surprised and disappointed in the Supreme Court’s decision to stay the Plan while the lawsuit proceeds. Despite the decision, Levi Strauss & Co. is committed to reducing our greenhouse gas emissions, and will continue to advocate for policies that stem climate change.” − Anna Walker, Senior Director of Global Policy and Advocacy, Levi Strauss & Co.
"The North Face was proud to join 365 other companies and investors in support of the Clean Power Plan last year. Despite the recent supreme court decision, The North Face is committed to moving forward with our recently announced commitment to 100% renewable energy by 2025, which demonstrates our deep commitment to a clean energy future." − James Rogers, Sustainability Manager, The North Face
"Modernizing our nation’s electric supplies, as the Clean Power Plan would do, is good for Colorado, good for the country and good for the environment. By reducing the carbon pollution that is disrupting our climate, the Clean Power Plan will help New Belgium Brewing achieve our goals of clean energy, secure water supplies and sustainable agriculture supply chains. While the court’s decision is disappointing, our company and our governor remain committed to renewable energy and a low-carbon economic future." − Jennifer Vervier, Director of Sustainability and Strategic Projects, New Belgium Brewing
"As one of the 366 businesses that publicly signed on to support the Clean Power Plan last year, Autodesk remains more committed than ever to design a low carbon future, powered by clean energy. Of all the challenges we face, none is more pressing and has greater implications for the international community than climate change. It is a systemic challenge that will require collaboration, as well as creativity, imagination, and innovation across sectors." − Lynelle Cameron, Senior Director of Sustainability and CEO, Autodesk Foundation
“Dignity Health recognizes that the emissions from thermal coal pose a significant risk to public health. We stood in solidarity with world leaders in Paris to advance a strong global deal to mitigate climate change, and the Clean Power Plan is an essential step toward that goal. The Supreme Court’s decision to stay the Plan is incongruent with our nation's commitment to tackle the most pressing environmental concern of our time. In support of climate solutions, Dignity Health will continue to meet our renewable energy goal while urging for decisive leadership to take meaningful action to ratchet up, not halt, climate commitments.” – Rachelle Reyes Wenger, Director, Public Policy & Community Advocacy, Dignity Health
"The Supreme Court decision to temporarily stay the Clean Power Plan is unfortunate but it will in no way impact Stonyfield's commitment to renewable energy, energy efficiency and reduction of our greenhouse gas footprint. We've been committed to our goals for years and we have no intention of slowing down our progress. The business case for clean energy is strong and that’s the bottom line reality for Stonyfield." – Lisa Drake, Director of Sustainability Innovation, Stonyfield Farm Inc.
“The Clean Power Plan is essential to the viability of Colorado’s ski industry and the 46,000 Coloradans who depend on the industry to put food on the table. The Supreme Court’s stay doesn’t change the reality that we experience almost one additional month of frost-free days today than we did in 1980. Furthermore, a changing climate represents a clear and present threat to the United States outdoor industry and the livelihoods of 6.1 million Americans. We look forward to the courts getting it right after careful consideration of the importance of clean air and a stable climate to the economy.” – Matt Hamilton, Sustainability Director, Aspen Skiing Company
"The Supreme Court decision to put a stay on the Clean Power Plan won’t put a stay on Clif Bar’s commitment to a clean energy future, including the use of 100% green power for our facilities, the increased use of green power in our supply chain, and to our on-going commitment to achieving climate neutral business operations. The Supreme Court decision will not deter us from doing what is good for people’s health and the health of our planet. We are not alone in this commitment; we stand with hundreds of other companies that support a clean energy future." – Elysa Hammond, Director of Environmental Stewardship, Clif Bar & Company.
“The Supreme Court decision to temporarily stay the Clean Power Plan is unfortunate but it will not impact Aveda’s longstanding commitment to renewable energy, energy efficiency and reduction of our greenhouse gas footprint. Aveda regards climate change as a primary threat to the biological diversity we depend on for many of the ingredients in our products, and we see it as one of the most critical issues facing the world today. Aveda has been purchasing renewable energy for our primary manufacturing facility since 2006 and we have no plans to stop. We believe that this has been very good for our brand and that the business case for renewable energy will only get stronger over time.” − Dominique Conseil, President, Aveda
“Calvert is disappointed by the Supreme Court’s decision to stay the Clean Power Plan, because it could delay progress in addressing the urgent challenge of climate change. Despite the delay, we continue to see an inevitable global transition from an energy system based on fossil fuels that are dangerous to source and cause adverse environmental impacts to one based on renewable energy sources; a system that is safe, secure, clean, reliable, and affordable. Driven by technological advancements and concerns about climate change, this transition will continue to provide opportunities for investors and business alike.” − Stu Dalheim, Vice President of Shareholder Advocacy, Calvert Investments
“US SIF is dismayed by the US Supreme Court’s decision to temporarily stay implementation of the Clean Power Plan. As the US membership association for professionals, firms, institutions and organizations engaged in sustainable, responsible and impact investing, we support the Clean Power Plan because it will help unleash investment in clean energy sources, drive innovation, protect public health, benefit US consumers and bolster international efforts to curb climate change. While we are confident that the courts will uphold the rule, any undue delay in its implementation risks further buildup of dangerous greenhouse gas emissions in the atmosphere and introduces uncertainty to the investors who seek to finance America’s clean energy future.” − Lisa Woll, CEO, US SIF: The Forum for Sustainable and Responsible Investment
"The urgency of the need to move toward a low-carbon future seems to have been lost on the Supreme Court when they elected to stay the Clean Power Plan. The impact of carbon emissions is a real and immediate threat to the vitality of our nation and our planet—one that must be met by the public and private sectors alike—and we are deeply disappointed in the Court’s shortsighted, ill-advised ruling." – Sonia Kowell, President, Zevin Asset Management
"The Clean Power Plan is a key component of the United States’ plan to combat climate change. While the Supreme Court’s announcement slows the process, it is only forestalling the inevitable. Businesses are resolved to act to combat climate change; investors are allocating capital to facilitate the transition to low-carbon economy; and the general public supports these efforts. In fact, close to three quarters of all Americans supporting climate action and climate policies like the CPP." – Tim Smith, Director of Environmental, Social, and Governance Shareowner Engagement, Walden Asset Management
"As radical as the Supreme Court action is, I still think we will look back on this development as a blip. We fully expect the CPP to weather these legal storms and to continue providing an important policy signal that we are transitioning to a clean energy future. The economic, social, political and market forces that are driving progress towards a low carbon economy and are supporting the CPP are very strong." – Jonas Kron, Senior Vice President and Director of Shareholder Advocacy, Trillium Asset Management
“On the international stage, where the United States is accountable for meeting the objectives outlined in Paris, we have an obligation to maintain the commitments we made and to further the new moment that emerged from Paris. The challenge to the Clean Power Plan from states and industry, and the stay from the Supreme Court, are contrary to these shared global goals of mitigating the worst impacts of climate change on poor and vulnerable communities throughout the planet. We recognize this is a temporary setback, yet investors expect our portfolio companies to maintain the momentum of the low carbon transition that is underway.” − Sister Patricia Daly, OP Sisters of St. Dominic of Caldwell NJ and Tri-State Coalition for Responsible Investment
"Reducing carbon emissions through the Clean Power Plan is essential to fostering a stable business environment for investors. Shortsighted attempts to derail it threaten economic progress." − Leslie Samuelrich, President, Green Century Capital Management
“As an association of cooperative grocers, increasingly aware of the impact of climate change on our food system, we were surprised and disappointed in the Supreme Court decision to stay the Clean Power Plan. Given the Plan’s vital importance at home, and for the integrity of the Paris climate agreement, we are advising our members to continue doing their part to advance a low-carbon future. The future of our industry depends on our leadership.“ – Robynn Schrader, CEO, National Co+op Grocers
“The world is watching and waiting to see if the US will stand behind the commitments we made in Paris. The Supreme Court’s action to not back EPA’s legal authority is extremely troubling and disappointing. We need to reassure the world that we are leaders in addressing the most critical problem of our time. HAPPYFAMILY is doubling down on our efforts to mitigate climate risk. We believe that all children are entitled to a happy, healthy future powered by clean, renewable energy.” – Jessica Rolph, Founding Partner and COO HAPPYFAMILY
“The Supreme Court decision to temporarily stay the Clean Power Plan is unfortunate but it will in no way impact United Natural Foods Incorporated (UNFI) commitment to renewable energy, energy efficiency and reduction of our greenhouse gas footprint. UNFI is completely committed to our renewable energy goals and we call on other business leaders to keep their commitments and to demonstrate that leadership of the private sector.” – Melody L Meyer, VP Corporate Social Responsibility, Policy & Industry Relations, United Natural Foods Incorporated
“Ameren Corp. is already making the transition to a cleaner and more diverse generation portfolio in a responsible manner," Ajay Arora, Ameren's vice president of environmental services and generation resource planning, said in a statement.
For American Electric Power, an electricity provider and one of the country’s top coal users, the court case “doesn’t change our focus on the diversification of our generation fleet,” said spokeswoman Melissa McHenry. Those diversification plans include more natural gas and renewables,” she said.
Calpine Corporation spokesman Brett Kerr said the move wasn't something the market actually anticipated. "We'll continue to be supportive of the Clean Power Plan," he said, pointing to a "natural evolution of the market anyway" away from less efficient coal plants. "So it won't really dictate us to change our strategy too much, which is to focus on being the premier operator of gas-fired plants in the United States." He said it's not in anybody's interest to have a federal implementation plan that dictates compliance for Texas.
Dominion Power spokesman David Botkins said, "We will work constructively with the Commonwealth and other stakeholders on a compliance plan that has our customers as the first priority, ensures reliability, and maintains a diverse mix of electric generation."
“Despite being surprised by the U.S. Supreme Court's Feb. 9 decision to stay the Clean Power Plan, DTE Energy Co. Chairman and CEO Gerry Anderson said in a Feb. 10 earnings call that he does not expect much to change in the short term for the company's DTE Electric Co. utility, which serves 2.1 million customers in southeastern Michigan… Anderson said the company is going full steam ahead on the investments to replace retiring plants, even with the stay of the EPA's Clean Power Plan. ‘There might be people who don't like the Clean Power Plan and say 'slow down, stop,' but [state Sen.] Mike Nofs won't be one of them, and neither will we,’ he said. Nofs is the primary advocate for the comprehensive energy reform in the state Legislature.”
“Electric utilities are investing in clean energy and pursuing energy efficiency,” Tom Kuhn, president of the Edison Electric Institute, the largest trade association of electricity providers, told a gathering of Wall Street investors less than a day after the Supreme Court announced its stay on the Clean Power Plan.
Exelon Corp., the nation's largest nuclear operator, said, "Regardless of this procedural development, the Supreme Court already has ruled that carbon is a pollutant the EPA must regulate. Our customers want reliable, clean and affordable electricity, and Exelon remains committed to helping drive the national transition to a low-carbon future."
FirstEnergy Corp. spokesman Todd Schneider: "While the legal challenges are addressed, we will work with our states if they chose to continue development of their compliance plans.”
A spokesperson noted that Great River Energy was not among the utilities challenging the CPP because it believed the rule is consistent with earlier Supreme Court rulings on EPA's standing to regulate carbon dioxide under the Clean Air Act. "It was not our point of view that the rulemaking was contrary to existing law, so we were a little surprised," he said.
"We're still going to continue to look to ways to cost-effectively expand our commitment to renewable resources," said Ry Schwark, a spokesman for PacifiCorp, which… intends to "continue to work with states as they develop their plans.”
Pahl Shipley, director of corporate communications at New Mexico-based PNM Resources Inc., said the stay doesn't affect the company's plan to lower the use of coal significantly by retiring two units at the San Juan Generating Station. "We'll monitor developments and continue to work with the state, but regardless of the outcome the company is moving forward to cut carbon emissions and add cleaner resources to our portfolio, including solar and natural gas," Shipley said.
PSEG "firmly believes that carbon emissions need to be reduced. We do believe that climate change is a serious issue; all the science points to that. It is real, and action needs to be taken; it's not going to wait for us to get our legal or political act together.”
“We've communicated pretty clear in recent years that we believe the transition away from coal is going to happen,” said Dave Eskelsen, a spokesman for Rocky Mountain Power, Wyoming’s largest utility.
Southern California Edison expressed disappointment in the court's ruling but added that "SCE supports the Clean Power Plan and will maintain an active role in supporting California's efforts to reduce greenhouse gas emissions, including support for renewable energy, transportation electrification, energy efficiency and innovative, clean energy technologies."
"While the Supreme Court's ruling is a significant development in this case, the merits of the case have not been decided and the legal proceedings will continue," Minneapolis-based Xcel Energy Inc. said in a prepared statement. Regardless of the final outcome, Xcel said it will continue to work with states and stakeholders on plans "to create sustainable and affordable energy futures." Further, "[t]his approach will not only ensure compliance with existing and new regulations, but also take advantage of new technologies, recognize evolving customer needs and continue to drive improvements in how we produce and deliver energy," the Fortune 500 utility said.
“[The] state will continue gathering information while the court considers the Clean Power Plan. By March the division is expecting to complete a baseline outlook for 15 years of carbon emissions given impending changes including APS fuel conversions, growth in renewable energy and energy efficiency.” – Eric Massey, Arizona Department of Environmental Quality
“As the world gets hotter and closer to irreversible climate change, these justices appear tone-deaf as they fiddle with procedural niceties. This arbitrary roadblock does incalculable damage and undermines America’s climate leadership. But make no mistake, this won’t stop California from continuing to do its part under the Clean Power Plan.” – California Governor Edmund G. Brown Jr.
“I am extremely disappointed by the Supreme Court’s decision today to block President Obama’s Clean Power Plan,” said Attorney General Harris. “The Court’s decision, and the special interests working to undermine this plan, threatens our environment, public health and economy.” – California Attorney General Kamala Harris
"Climate change is the most critical threat of our time. It is already warming the earth, raising our sea levels, and affecting our food supply - and it is our responsibility to stop it. Last year, Los Angeles made a firm commitment in our Sustainable City plan to end our dependence on coal by 2025, and we know that the future of our planet, economy, and children's health depends on cities across the world moving forward with us. I am disappointed that the Supreme Court is taking a step backwards by putting a hold on President Obama's sensible clean power plan. But here's the good news: no matter what happens on the federal level, local leaders will not ignore the danger of complacency, or the urgent need for immediate action.” – Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti
“While we're still reviewing the implications of the Supreme Court's decision, we remain committed to having the cleanest air in the nation. We'll continue to build upon the great strides we've made as a state — with the Clean Air Clean Jobs Act and our Renewable Energy Standard — to protect our public health and environment.” – Colorado Governor John Hickenlooper
“It is prudent for Colorado to move forward during the litigation to ensure that the state is not left at a disadvantage if the courts uphold all or part of the Clean Power Plan. Because the Supreme Court did not say whether the stay would change the rule’s compliance deadlines, Colorado could lose valuable time if it delays its work on the state plan and the rule is ultimately upheld.” – Colorado Department of Public Health & Environment
"I believe in science - the data is real. Global warming is happening. Urgent action is needed on a national and an international basis to combat it. That's why the Supreme Court's ruling to pause implementation of the Clean Power Plan is disappointing and shortsighted. However, it is not a final decision on the legal merits of the Clean Power Plan, so it is important that we continue with preparations for compliance with the plan while these issues are being worked out in the courts… Connecticut is already a national leader on global warming - and that will not change. We're going to continue to cut carbon in a cost-effective, reliable manner while growing a clean energy economy. Through programs like the Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative, we already have achieved significant reductions in carbon pollution from the electric sector, while growing our economies and maintaining reliable power. We have an obligation to combat greenhouse gases, and Connecticut is going to continue to do just that." – Connecticut Governor Dannel Molloy
"I am disappointed in yesterday’s Supreme Court action on the EPA Clean Power Plan, but optimistic that it will be upheld when the courts review the merits of the case. We remain determined to move forward in responding to the issue of climate change. As a RGGI state, Delaware has led the country in working to curtail greenhouse gas emissions from the power sector, and we will continue to do so regardless of the decision to stay the Clean Power Plan rule. As a coastal state, we are acutely aware of the serious threats of climate change and sea level rise, and the Clean Power Plan represents a sensible and flexible approach for states to make the changes required to protect our economy and quality of life." – Delaware Governor Jack Markell
“Although we are disappointed with the Supreme Court’s decision to delay implementation of the EPA’s Clean Power Plan, we believe the courts will uphold this program after full consideration of the merits of the case. Massachusetts has made important progress on addressing the threat of climate change, and as this case proceeds we will work with our coalition of states and local governments to continue to defend the Clean Power Plan’s reasonable, flexible and cost effective approach to lowering the greenhouse gas emissions of our country’s power plants.” – Massachusetts Attorney General Maura Healey
“While the Court’s temporary stay is disappointing, it does nothing to diminish our resolve in Minnesota to keep moving forward on clean energy initiatives, including the development of our state’s Clean Power Plan. President Obama’s strong leadership, the nation-leading initiatives of some of our state’s utilities, and my administration's commitment will assure our state’s continued progress… We shouldn't need a federal edict to understand how vital it is that we keep doing everything in our collective powers to reduce harmful greenhouse gas emissions, improve energy efficiency, and advance Minnesota’s clean energy economy.” – Minnesota Governor Mark Dayton
“New Hampshire has long led efforts to cut carbon emissions and combat climate change so that we can have the cleaner and safer environment that our people need to live healthy, productive lives – and it's crucial that other states follow our lead and take responsibility for the pollution that they cause. Through programs such as the Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative, our region is showing that it is possible to protect public health, spur energy innovation, and promote affordable, reliable energy sources for our economy. That's why I have been a strong supporter of the Clean Power Plan, and the Supreme Court's decision to delay this important step forward is very disappointing.” – New Hampshire Governor Maggie Hassan
“We are confident that once the courts have fully reviewed the merits of the Clean Power Plan, it will be upheld as lawful under the Clean Air Act. Our coalition of states and local governments will continue to vigorously defend the Clean Power Plan —which is critical to ensuring that necessary progress is made in confronting climate change.” – New York Attorney General Eric Schneiderman and Joint Statement of States and Counties
“The Supreme Court’s decision to temporarily halt President Obama’s Clean Power Plan is a disappointing setback in the nation’s efforts to address climate change. The plan should absolutely be upheld on its merits, and New York State remains committed to moving forward with our own actions to protect the environment and the public health. From dedicating $5 billion to advance the clean tech economy, to requiring that 50 percent of electricity in the state come from renewable sources by 2030 and limiting greenhouse gas emissions in line with the global Under 2 MOU, New York is leading by example in addressing one of the most pressing challenges of our time. But this issue requires a global response – and the Clean Power Plan is crucial to ensuring a cleaner, greener, and safer future for all.” – New York Governor Andrew Cuomo
“Even though the Clean Power Plan is going through a battle in the courts, Oregon has been and continues to be committed to national efforts to reduce greenhouse gas emissions from the power sector. Oregon is well-positioned to comply with the EPA targets because there have already been early actions in Oregon through investments in energy efficiency, renewable energy development, and moving away from coal." – Oregon Governor Kate Brown
“The rule’s in effect, the rule hasn’t gone away. We, at least currently, see a path to submitting [a state plan] on Sept. 6… It’s clear that renewables are the future. What the Clean Power Plan is calling for is really good business.” – Pennsylvania DEP Secretary John Quigley
“Pennsylvania will continue planning and engagement with stakeholders on the Clean Power Plan, pending final decision of this issue by the Supreme Court. We will continue to closely monitor the ongoing legal process.” – Jeff Sheridan, Spokesperson for Pennsylvania Governor Tom Wolf
“This is incredibly disappointing news. The forces fighting President Obama’s common sense plan are those with a stake in the dirty energy status quo that is of polluting our air, water, and forests and contributing to global climate change. Their desperate attempt to make a profit at the expense of our health and the future of the planet is standing in the way of serious action to combat climate change and preserve a livable planet for future generations… It is no surprise that the suit over the Clean Power Plan was brought by proponents of the coal industry. That industry, and those who support it, will do everything they can to boost their profits, even if it means imperiling our planet’s future. This is just one more example why Vermont should not be in the business of supporting the coal industry and should divest from coal stocks.” – Vermont Governor Peter Shumlin
“Over the last several months my administration has been working with a diverse group of Virginia stakeholders that includes members of the environmental, business, and energy communities to develop a strong, viable path forward to comply with the Clean Power Plan. As this court case moves forward, we will stay on course and continue to develop the elements for a Virginia plan to reduce carbon emissions and stimulate our clean energy economy.” – Virginia Governor Terry McAuliffe
“Yesterday’s Supreme Court ruling on the Clean Power Plan is very troubling, surprising, and disappointing. And it inexplicably breaks with past rulings in which the high court has called for federal rules to limit the carbon pollution that is driving climate change… We cannot afford to wait any longer for federal action to address carbon pollution and transition to clean energy. Here in Washington state we are unfortunately already seeing the harmful impacts of climate change, and we will continue to take steps that reduce carbon and to lead the nation in clean energy. The EPA’s Clean Power Plan remains a crucial tool to ensure that every state must do its part, and to empower them to do so.” – Washington Governor Jay Inslee