Climate change: Has the EPA gone overboard?

In debate, Freeman defends the Clean Power Plan

freemandebateDid the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) ‘go overboard’ with its new regulatory mandates in the Clean Power Plan? On Sept. 7, Professor Jody Freeman LL.M. ’91 S.J.D. ’95 , founding director of the Harvard Law School Environmental Law and Policy Program, participated in an Intelligence Squared debate in front of a live audience in New York City on the EPA’s bold initiative to reduce carbon pollution at power plants to address climate change.

Freeman, a former White House climate adviser for President Obama, argued against the motion with Carl Pope, the former executive director and chairman of the Sierra Club. Arguing for the motion were Charles D. McConnell, executive director of Rice University’s Energy and Environment Initiative and former assistant secretary of energy at the U.S. Department of Energy in the Obama administration, and Michael Nasi, and environmental and energy lawyer.

A pre-debate poll survey of the live audience showed that 59 percent didn’t agree that the EPA went overboard, 18 percent agreed, with 23 percent undecided. After the debate, 72 percent disagreed, while 23 percent agreed with the motion and 5 percent remained undecided. Watch the debate.


“Arguing for the Clean Power Plan, former White House climate adviser Jody Freeman won the three-round match.” Read Grenwire’s coverage of the debate.


Intelligence Squared is a nonpartisan, nonprofit organization that brings together the world’s leading authorities on the most important issues of the day for intelligent discussion grounded in facts and informed by reasoned analysis.