RAGA Chair and Arkansas Attorney General Leslie Rutledge Talks Clean Energy on “America’s Newsroom”



RUTLEDGE: As the Attorney General, someone who’s challenged the former administration’s Clean Power Plan, which would have sky-rocketed energy costs and electric costs for all Americans, I was so pleased that not only did the US Supreme Court put an unprecedented stay on the Clean Power Plan, but now, President Trump and this administration and active Administrator Wheeler have put forth the Affordable Clean Energy rule. What does this mean? It means costs [are] going down. We can have affordable clean energy in America, to ensure that we are able to grow more jobs. The Clean Energy rule has an estimated cost compliance savings. That’s a reduction in compliance of $6.4 billion vs. the $25 billion that the Clean Power Plan would have cost Americans and American businesses and job creators, because of its implementation. So, I was extraordinarily happy yesterday with the President’s actions and acting Administrator Wheeler’s action on this.

ERIC SHAWN: How would you respond to critics who are concerned about global warming and that this type of regulation could only increase global warming and the problems that we’ve had?

RUTLEDGE: Well the critics need to look strictly to the numbers and the facts. From 2005 to 2017, our emissions have decreased 14% in the United States while the global emissions have increased 20%. When you look at since 1970, what we have done in terms of increasing the economy by 260%, it has risen while our emissions have decreased double-digits. And that’s because America sets the gold standard for this, and we are protecting the environment. We must always protect the environment. And I can assure Americans – I’m a seventh-generation Arkansan, I was raised on a cattle farm, my husband’s a farmer, nobody cares more about land and air and protecting it than our farmers and ranchers do. And so we must protect our land and air and these sorts of standards by allowing states to work cooperatively with the federal government, as opposed to a heavy-handed approach that had been taken in the Obama administration.