September 18, 2019

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EPA (Environmental Protection Agency) Publishes Proposed Rule to Cap Carbon Emissions from New Power Plants

U.S. EPA’s long anticipated proposed rule for greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions from new power plants was published in the Federal Register on Jan. 8, 2014. In a year that is likely to be filled with significant U.S. EPA rulemakings, this proposed rule for new fossil fuel-fired electric generating units (EGUs) will be particularly important. U.S. EPA’s prior proposed rule to regulate greenhouse gas emissions from fossil fuel-fired EGUs garnered an unprecedented 2.5 million public comments. Further, the rule is one of the centerpieces of the White House’s Climate Action Plan

As we previously reported, the specific standards U.S. EPA is accepting comments on are as follows:

  • Proposed fossil fuel-fired utility boilers and integrated gasification combined cycle (“IGCC”) units limits are:

  • 1,100 lb CO2/MWh gross over a 12-operating month period, or

  • 1,000-1,050 lb CO2/MWh gross over an 84-operating month (7-year) period

  • Proposed natural gas-fired stationary combustion units limits are:

  • 1,000 lb CO2/MWh gross for larger units (> 850 mmBtu/hr)

  • 1,100 lb CO2/MWh gross for smaller units (≤ 850 mmBtu/hr)

Although there are many similarities between U.S. EPA’s prior proposed rule issued in April 2012 and this new proposed rule, U.S. EPA will not reconsider comments on the prior rulemaking, so many interested parties will need to submit new comments even if duplicative. U.S. EPA is withdrawing the April 2012 proposed rule pursuant to a withdrawal notice that was also published on Jan. 8, 2014. Further, there are several key differences between the new proposed rule and the April 2012 proposed rule— notably the emission limits for boilers and IGCC units are slightly higher—on which the Agency has requested comment. The comment deadline for the new proposed rule is currently set for March 10, 2014.

A copy of the proposed rule is available online here: http://www.gpo.gov/fdsys/pkg/FR-2014-01-08/pdf/2013-28668.pdf

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Charles Denton Environmental Attorney
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Charlie Denton represents an array of clients in environmental and toxic tort litigation, enforcement defense, regulatory compliance solutions and pollution insurance coverage disputes. He also serves as an alternative dispute resolution (ADR) neutral mediator and arbitrator. Persistent and highly collaborative, Charlie can take complicated issues and challenges and then identify a strategic path to achieve the client’s objectives.

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Michael Elam Environmental Energy Attorney
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Michael represents businesses and other clients in complex projects and transactions, disputes and litigation. He is known for helping clients obtain creative and cutting-edge agreements, particularly with respect to infrastructure and energy-related international projects. Michael offers deep experience in investigations, risk avoidance, risk allocation and dispute resolution with a chess vs. checkers approach to clients’ long-term goals. He is effective in working with federal, state and international governments and representing private sector clients seeking to secure approvals and financing for sensitive development projects or to resolve significant, complex claims.

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