As a Portlander who’s considering staying in Maine after college graduation, I thank U.S. Sen. Angus King for understanding that Maine’s environment and economy can’t afford to continue business-as-usual.
On Aug. 3, President Obama announced the Clean Power Plan, taking the biggest step on climate action that the country’s ever seen. The plan will limit carbon pollution from power plants and push a transition to clean energy.
The plan couldn’t come sooner; the Gulf of Maine is warming faster than 99 percent of waters globally. Clearly, climate action is needed, and that’s exactly what we got with the new rule.
Not only did King support the plan right after it’s announcement, but he also called for action to strengthen and improve it. Clearly, he understands that Maine will benefit from the new standards.
Maine’s capacity for renewable development can literally charge our economy for the future.
The solar industry alone has grown faster than any other part of the nation’s economy; 3.5 megawatts of solar capacity were installed in Maine in 2014, a 43 percent increase over 2013. With each new investment, the costs of solar tumble and the industry grows.
I can see myself staying in Maine to work in the renewables field. A couple years back, I didn’t think that would be possible. The Clean Power Plan helped crack that door open.
I encourage U.S. Sen. Susan Collins to also come out in support of the plan, for Maine’s environment, economy, and the livelihoods of future generations.