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New rules will slash air, water and climate pollution

The Environmental Protection Agency on Thursday finalized an ambitious set of rules aimed at slashing air pollution, water pollution and planet-warming emissions spewing from the nation’s power plants.

If fully implemented, the rules will have enormous consequences for U.S. climate goals, the air Americans breathe and the ways they get their electricity. The power sector ranks as the nation’s second-largest contributor to climate change, and it is a major source of toxic air pollutants tied to various health problems.

Before the restrictions take effect, however, they will have to survive near-certain legal challenges from Republican attorneys general, who have been emboldened by the Supreme Court’s skepticism of expansive environmental regulations.

Another wild card is the November election, which could hand the White House back to former president Donald Trump, who has pledged to scrap dozens of President Biden’s green policies if he returns to office.


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