State Responses to Trump Administration’s Executive Order that Seeks to Reverse Federal Climate Policy

March 28, 2017

Following President Donald Trump's executive order directing a review of the Clean Power Plan and rescinding other prior federal actions on climate change, many state officials issued statements pledging to continue action to address climate change and its impacts.

The executive order: 

  • Directs EPA to review - and revise or rescind - the Clean Power Plan, a rule to reduce carbon pollution from existing power plants, as well as a companion rule to reduce carbon pollution from new power plants.
  • Reversed requirements that agencies consider the risks posed by climate change to their missions, programs and facilities, which will undermine the ability of the federal government to prepare for future impacts.
  • Directs the Council on Environmental Quality to rescind its guidance on incorporating consideration of climate change into environmental reviews under the National Environmental Policy Act.
  • Directs EPA to review - and revise or rescind - its rule on reducing methane emissions from new sources in the oil and gas industry.
  • Recinds the federal government's "social cost of carbon" metric.
  • Lifts all moratoria on federal land coal leasing activities. 

The Department of Justice has notified the DC Circuit, which heard oral aguements on the Clean Power Plan in September, of the executive order.

The following states have issued statements:



"Today’s Executive Order by the President pulling back on policies addressing climate change will not deter Colorado’s efforts. Natural gas has become more economical than coal, and Colorado is a national leader on wind and solar energy, which are a boon to our economy, jobs and the environment."

– Gov. Hickenlooper





District of Columbia
















“Today’s action marks the latest in a series of destructive Executive Orders from President Trump. This new order will do irreparable damage to our environment and our economy. It will give a ‘license to pollute’ to industries across the United States, at the expense of clean air, clean water, and clean energy.

As damaging as this executive order will be for the nation, and for the world, it will not deter our efforts here in Minnesota. We will continue to build on the progress of our nation-leading Next Generation Energy Act, and redouble our commitment to providing clean, affordable water for all Minnesotans."

- Gov. Dayton

New Mexico


New York




“The science of climate change is settled and the President’s actions today turn the federal government’s back on Pennsylvania’s environment and our economy. Today’s action by the President will do nothing to help coal communities but will exacerbate the negative impact climate change is having on our economy – from agriculture to tourism.

Nevertheless, Pennsylvania, as a major energy provider, will continue to reduce pollution thanks to market decisions in the power sector, increased reliance on clean energy and improved energy efficiency, and improved oversight of emissions of potent greenhouse gasses such as methane."

– Gov. Wolf  

Rhode Island






“The actions President Trump took today threaten our environment, our security and our ability to compete in the global economy. It is impossible and downright reckless to deny the science of global warming or the impact it is already having on states like Virginia. Sea level rise and extreme weather are already impacting Virginia families, businesses and key military assets like the world’s largest naval base in Norfolk. The Clean Power Plan not only provides a necessary response to the threat of climate change; it also provides a stable regulatory environment that is essential for businesses to make long-term investments and create new jobs.

We have a choice: we can lead this fight and capitalize on the unprecedented economic potential of clean energy, or we can bury our heads in the sand and waste an opportunity to create the next generation of energy jobs. Here in the Commonwealth, we will continue to confront the impacts of climate change and support clean energy investments that will grow our economy and shape our future.”

– Gov. McAuliffe


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