Colorado’s governor John Hickenlooper (D) has abandoned a clean air executive order aimed at curbing climate change, attributing today’s decision to strong pushback from Republicans. The executive order, which would bypass the legislature, seeks to cut carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions from power plants by 35 percent.

Hickenlooper believes “the potential benefits were outweighed by the collateral damage,” given the GOP’s strong concerns it would hurt the state’s economy. The governor’s executive order is nearly identical to the Clean Power Plan written by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) at the behest of President Obama and anti-fossil fuel groups.

Currently 28 states, the coal industry, and over a hundred groups are suing the EPA, calling the CPP unconstitutional for bypassing the Congress and rolling out new law impacting an entire industry. The Supreme Court suspended the implementation of the CPP pending the outcome of the litigation. But that hasn’t stopped EPA chief Gina McCarthy from telling Democratic-led states to pursue to the goals in the CPP.

Bypassing the courts

Hickenlooper believes his executive order for reducing CO2 emissions will meet the goals of the now-postponed CPP.

It requires Colorado to reduce CO2 emissions from fossil fuel-powered plants by “35 percent by 2030, compared with 2012 levels.”

The order says that global warming is causing more violent weather that endangers Colorado’s economy, like skiing and summer activities. Currently, Colorado is enjoying a booming ski season as snow gets dumped on the state.

But the science doesn't back up the statement that extreme weather events are increasing as predicted by many climate alarmists and computer models.

Extreme weather

Violent or ‘extreme’ weather statistics indicate there hasn’t been a rise in floods, droughts, tornados, hurricanes, or storm intensity.

This was acknowledged by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change in its 2013 assessment report. One recent paper noted that the recent rise in extreme weather damage can be linked to societal factors such as populations spreading into hazardous areas and more items being insured.

Keeping prices affordable

Another goal in the governor’s order was to keep prices affordable while lowering CO2 emissions, but didn’t specify how Colorado would carry out those commitments to the economy. State Republicans said the federal courts need to resolve the CPP litigation before forging ahead with any state plan.

Upon the withdrawal of the plan, Hickenlooper said his executive order was not a mandate, but rather a “vision.” Not carrying out the plan, the governor said, would be equivalent to “government malpractice.” The EPA has conceded the CPP would only avert warming by 0.01 degrees by 2100 while costing taxpayers trillions in added costs.