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Environmental groups urge Obama to use ‘executive authority’ to fight climate change

However, power companies are already finding it difficult for some power generators, specifically coal-fired generators, due to stricter EPA environmental rules.

On Monday, Georgia Power announced it was asking state regulators for permission to shut down 15 coal-fired and oil-fired generators, in part due to current and future environmental regulations.

A September report by the American Coalition for Clean Coal Electricity found that EPA regulations have contributed to the planned shutdown of more than 200 coal-fired generators across 25 states.

Another study by National Economic Research Associates for the American Coalition for Clean Coal Electricity found that over the next four years between 54,000 and 69,000 megawatts of coal-fueled electricity generation will be forced to retire, mainly due to the EPA regulations.

The Clean Air Act requires the EPA to regulate emissions from stationary and mobile sources in order to protect the public from hazardous airborne pollutants that are harmful to human health.

The other two steps the letter mentions are elevating the issue of climate change in the public discussion and rejecting “dirty” fuels such as oil from tar sands — which is the oil that will be brought into the U.S. via the Keystone XL pipeline.

“Cutting carbon pollution at home and rejecting dirty fuels will establish America’s leadership and credibility, enabling you to create clean energy jobs in the United States while forging an effective international coalition to cut global carbon pollution,” the letter concluded. “We urge you to elevate climate solutions to the top tier of your domestic agenda and America’s bilateral and global diplomatic priorities.”

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