Press Release: EPA Power Plan rules

Press Release

Dt: August 3, 2015

Re: EPA clean power plan rules

Contact: Frank Knapp, South Carolina Small Business Chamber of Commerce,

EPA Clean Power Plan

Statement of Frank Knapp Jr., president and CEO of the South Carolina Small Business Chamber of Commerce, regarding the EPA Clean Power Plan released today. Mr. Knapp is also co-chair of the American Sustainable Business Council.

COLUMBIA, S.C. –  Climate change is real and its primary cause is carbon pollution.  The 12-month period ending this past June was the hottest 12 months on record.  Last month should add to this ominous statistic.  A study released in June of this year found that “the rate of global warming during the last 15 years has been as fast as or faster than that seen during the latter half of the 20th Century.”  A United Nations report last year concluded that climate change unchecked will result in the earth having “severe, pervasive and irreversible” impacts.

In South Carolina the most dangerous economic consequence of increasing earth temperatures is sea level rise that threaten our coastal tourism economy.  Ocean levels have been rising slowly but the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) projects an acceleration of this trend and that up to a six foot rise in sea level is in the realm of probability due to climate change.  A November 2014 Winthrop University poll found that 8.7% of South Carolinians see the significant effects of sea level rise now and over 46% expect to see significant effects in the next 25 years.  The public accepts that this impact of climate change is happening and 73% want the state of South Carolina and local governments to start planning for rising seas.

Since 2013 the South Carolina Small Business Chamber has worked along our coast to educate small businesses and local governments about the danger of sea level rise.  We have used the scientifically designed tools that model inundation threats and believe that our coastal communities can take steps to be resilient probably up to a three foot rise in sea level.   But beyond that there will be extreme inundation and destruction of property and local economies.   That is why it is critical that the United States take steps to reduce carbon pollution.  The EPA Clean Power Plan does just that.

Critics of the new rules say that they will increase electricity costs, kill jobs and hurt the economy.  However, a study released last week from the Georgia Institute of Technology refutes the critics.  The study concludes that compliance with the EPA rules can “be done cost effectively through a combination of renewable energy and energy efficiency policies as well as a modest carbon price”, such as being advocated by former South Carolina Republican Congressman Bob Inglis.  The result will actually be lower electricity bills for consumers and a growing economy.

The critics of government regulations have always predicted lost jobs and a harmed economy whenever a new regulation is proposed.  They have been wrong every time.  Businesses know how to make money from new regulatory compliance.  New businesses will be created along with new jobs.  Workers who are displaced will be retrained for better jobs.  And in the case of South Carolina, we will save our coastal small business tourism economy for our children, grandchildren and generations to come.  That is why we need to put a cap on carbon pollution.  We can and must achieve this goal.  The rest of the world will follow our leadership.


South Carolina Small Business Chamber of Commerce | 1717 Gervais St., Columbia, SC 29201 | (803) 252-5733 |


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