2013-09-19. EPA moves to limit emissions of future coal- and gas-fired power plants.

posted Sep 22, 2013, 5:07 PM by Alan Gould   [ updated Sep 22, 2013, 8:33 PM ]

For GSS Energy Use chapter 3 and Climate Change chapter 9. Excerpt:  The Environmental Protection Agency will move Friday to strictly limit the amount of carbon that future coal- and gas-fired power plants can pour into the atmosphere, the first such restrictions on greenhouse gases imposed by the agency. ...The industry almost certainly will challenge it in court. For the administration, the revised rule is the first major domestic initiative since President Obama laid out his climate action plan in June. Ahead is the EPA’s decision on limiting emissions from existing power plants, which Administrator Gina McCarthy said Thursday will be made in June 2014. “We’re providing at least some certainty here that [coal plants] have an opportunity to be around in a carbon-constrained world,” McCarthy said in an interview. “The president wants every fuel to be able to compete in a clean environment.” ...Dan Lashof, director of the climate and clean air program at the Natural Resources Defense Council, said the Clean Air Act requires pollution controls to be adequately demonstrated, but “there’s nothing in the statute that says it’s the cheapest way to make electricity.” McCarthy said: “Clearly the technology is available. It’s been fully demonstrated.” The Energy Department has a $6 billion loan fund to help finance development of clean energy technologies, she said. “We’re not trying to deny that there is a cost associated with these, but any first-generation technology is going to have that,” she said. ...The standard, which would be finalized in a year, would require new coal plants to emit no more than 1,100 pounds of carbon dioxide per megawatt-hour.  ...Hal Quinn, president and chief executive of the National Mining Association, said the new standard “effectively bans coal from America’s power portfolio, leaving new power plants equipped with even the most efficient and environmentally advanced technologies out in the cold.” ...But John Thompson, who directs the Fossil Transition Project for the Clean Air Task Force, an advocacy group, said his group has estimated that under a worst-case scenario, partly capturing CO2 from coal plants would increase the cost of electricity by 13 percent over 30 years.... http://www.washingtonpost.com/national/health-science/epa-moves-to-limit-emissions-of-future-coal--and-gas-fired-power-plants/2013/09/19/e71728bc-2139-11e3-a358-1144dee636dd_story.html. By Lenny Bernstein and Juliet Eilperin, The Washington Post.