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N. American leaders to push renewable energy

Kevin Freking
Associated Press

Washington — The leaders of the United States, Canada and Mexico will pledge this week to rely on renewable energy to generate 50 percent of North America’s electrical power by 2025, White House officials said Monday.

That’s a big jump from last year’s 37 percent level. But it’s doable through greater efficiency and reliance on solar, wind and other clean energy sources, Brian Deese, senior adviser to President Barack Obama, said.

“The transformation of the American energy sector that’s underway is going to continue,” Deese said. “That has been driven by some of the policy choices this president has made, but it’s also being driven by market forces that are bringing down the cost of clean energy at rates that even the smartest analysts weren’t predicting only a couple of years ago.”

Deese said the administration’s effort to reduce power-plant emissions, dubbed the “Clean Power Plan,” is a central component of the effort to get to 50 percent renewable energy. But the Supreme Court earlier this year blocked the Environmental Protection Agency from enforcing the plan until certain legal challenges were resolved.

Obama will meet with Prime Minister Justin Trudeau of Canada and President Enrique Pena Nieto during Wednesday’s North American Leaders’ Summit in Ottawa. Efforts to curb global warming will be a big part of the agenda.