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  • Event
  • Blog post

    A Look Back at U.S. Climate Policy in 2011

    As the year winds down, it’s a good time to take stock of climate policy in the United States. Here’s a quick round up of what happened -- or didn’t happen -- in 2011.

    The year began with big questions about what the Obama Administration and states would do to address climate change and clean energy, absent a comprehensive federal climate policy. This year’s record was decidedly mixed. Not as much happened as some would have liked, but it was in total better than many feared as the year began.

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  • Blog post

    EPA Mercury and Air Toxics Rules for Power Plants: 20+ Years in the Making

    As the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency prepares to release new Mercury and Air Toxics Standards (MATS), some people may be wondering about the history and timeline for these standards. One Senator recently claimed that EPA is “charging ahead” with them.

    These standards, however, have been in development for over 20 years. These are standards that many plants are already meeting. Furthermore, 11 of the 15 largest coal utilities, roughly half of the nation’s coal fleet, have informed their shareholders that they are well positioned to meet them.

    This post unwraps the history, standards, and timelines for compliance.

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  • Publication
  • Blog post

    EPA Mercury Rules: Keeping the Lights on While Removing Toxics from Our Air

    Next week the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency is expected to finalize new rules to reduce mercury and other toxic air emissions that will affect dozens of antiquated power plants currently operating without pollution controls.

    These rules have stirred debate in some circles as to whether retrofitting or retiring outdated plants will cause shortfalls in electricity capacity. How will new EPA mercury rules influence the electricity system? This post updates earlier assessments by taking a close look at recent studies on the reliability of the electricity grid to answer that question.

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  • News
  • Blog post

    Old Roads to a New Destination

    This article originally appeared in the May/June 2011 edition of The Environmental Forum (www.eli.org), and is reposted with permission.

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  • Blog post

    Dialogue on Performance Standards for Existing Power Plants: Participant Comments to EPA

    In two legal challenges filed in the wake of the Supreme Court decision in Massachusetts v. EPA, a number of states and non-governmental organizations sought to compel the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to regulate new and existing power plants under section 111 of the Clean Air Act.

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  • Blog post

    Myths and Facts about U.S. EPA Standards

    In recent months, the debate over U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) regulations of greenhouse gas emissions took on a heated tone across the country. At the federal level, the Senate voted down several amendments (detailed summaries available here) that would have restricted EPA’s ability to regulate dangerous greenhouse gas (GHG) pollution. During the same week, the U.S. House of Representatives passed a bill that would severely restrict EPA’s authority to regulate GHGs, while taking the highly unusual step of overturning a scientific finding. Meanwhile, opponents of pollution controls continue to press for further debate and additional votes on bills that would restrict or eliminate EPA’s authority.

    Throughout the debate, some of the loudest voices have argued that EPA’s actions would be harmful to industry and the economy. Looking closer, however, we find that these claims are largely inaccurate – many of them are exaggerations or, in some cases, outright misinformation. WRI analysts set the record straight.

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  • Blog post

    Myths and Facts about U.S. EPA Standards

    WRI experts take closer look at some of the myths, inaccuracies, and misinformation surrounding Environmental Protection Agency regulation of greenhouse gases.

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WRI to Host Discussion on State of the Clean Air Act

On January 23, WRI will host a high-profile roundtable discussion on “The State of the Clean Air Act: Past, Present and Future.” The event will be moderated by Senator Tom Carper (D-Del.) and Senator Lamar Alexander (R-Tenn.), and will feature former EPA Administrators William Ruckelshaus and William Reilly, and other speakers.

Share

A Look Back at U.S. Climate Policy in 2011

As the year winds down, it’s a good time to take stock of climate policy in the United States. Here’s a quick round up of what happened -- or didn’t happen -- in 2011.

The year began with big questions about what the Obama Administration and states would do to address climate change and clean energy, absent a comprehensive federal climate policy. This year’s record was decidedly mixed. Not as much happened as some would have liked, but it was in total better than many feared as the year began.

Share

EPA Mercury and Air Toxics Rules for Power Plants: 20+ Years in the Making

As the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency prepares to release new Mercury and Air Toxics Standards (MATS), some people may be wondering about the history and timeline for these standards. One Senator recently claimed that EPA is “charging ahead” with them.

These standards, however, have been in development for over 20 years. These are standards that many plants are already meeting. Furthermore, 11 of the 15 largest coal utilities, roughly half of the nation’s coal fleet, have informed their shareholders that they are well positioned to meet them.

This post unwraps the history, standards, and timelines for compliance.

Share

EPA Mercury Rules: Keeping the Lights on While Removing Toxics from Our Air

Next week the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency is expected to finalize new rules to reduce mercury and other toxic air emissions that will affect dozens of antiquated power plants currently operating without pollution controls.

These rules have stirred debate in some circles as to whether retrofitting or retiring outdated plants will cause shortfalls in electricity capacity. How will new EPA mercury rules influence the electricity system? This post updates earlier assessments by taking a close look at recent studies on the reliability of the electricity grid to answer that question.

Share

Old Roads to a New Destination

This article originally appeared in the May/June 2011 edition of The Environmental Forum (www.eli.org), and is reposted with permission.

Share

Dialogue on Performance Standards for Existing Power Plants: Participant Comments to EPA

In two legal challenges filed in the wake of the Supreme Court decision in Massachusetts v. EPA, a number of states and non-governmental organizations sought to compel the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to regulate new and existing power plants under section 111 of the Clean Air Act.

Share

Myths and Facts about U.S. EPA Standards

In recent months, the debate over U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) regulations of greenhouse gas emissions took on a heated tone across the country. At the federal level, the Senate voted down several amendments (detailed summaries available here) that would have restricted EPA’s ability to regulate dangerous greenhouse gas (GHG) pollution. During the same week, the U.S. House of Representatives passed a bill that would severely restrict EPA’s authority to regulate GHGs, while taking the highly unusual step of overturning a scientific finding. Meanwhile, opponents of pollution controls continue to press for further debate and additional votes on bills that would restrict or eliminate EPA’s authority.

Throughout the debate, some of the loudest voices have argued that EPA’s actions would be harmful to industry and the economy. Looking closer, however, we find that these claims are largely inaccurate – many of them are exaggerations or, in some cases, outright misinformation. WRI analysts set the record straight.

Share

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