Sunday, May 12, 2024

Biden’s EPA Pursues Dramatic Clampdown Emissions from Power Plants; Biden Forces Cap On Nearly All Plant Emissions By 2032, Further Strains Electrical Grid; Red States Challenge Biden's Coal-Plant Pollution Curbs

Biden’s EPA pursues dramatic clampdown on emissions from power plants:
A suite of new rules to dramatically slash pollution from coal and natural gas plants was unveiled by the Biden administration Thursday — and critics promptly blasted the measures as “death by a thousand cuts to America’s fossil fuel industry.”
Under the new regime, existing coal-fired and new natural gas-fired power plants will be mandated to capture 90% of all carbon pollution, the Environmental Protection Agency announced.
To operate plants beyond 2039, they would need to have proper carbon capture systems fulfilling those requirements by 2032, officials explained to reporters.
EPA honchos hope that the new rule, coupled with tax credits in the Inflation Reduction Act, will trigger innovation and push energy companies to adopt more carbon-friendly technology.
The agency also rolled out three other major rules, entailing the tightening up of emissions standards for neurotoxin mercury from coal-fired plants, reducing wastewater pollution from coal-fired plants by around 660 million pounds per year, and stronger restrictions on coal ash management.
Those new rules tap into authority from the Clean Air Act, the Clean Water Act and the Resource Conservation and Recovery Act.
“By developing these standards in a clear, transparent, inclusive manner, EPA is cutting pollution while ensuring that power companies can make smart investments and continue to deliver reliable electricity for all Americans,” EPA Administrator Michael Regan said.
Those four major rule changes pose significant hurdles for the coal industry, which contributed to roughly 16.2% of US utility-scale electricity generation in 2023, according to the Energy Information Administration. --->READ MORE HERE
AP Photo/Chris Carlson
Biden forces cap on nearly all plant emissions by 2032, further strains electrical grid:
The Biden administration finalized rules Thursday requiring new natural gas power plants and existing coal-fired power plants to slash nearly all emissions by 2032, which would shutter plants or significantly reduce operations in the face of increasing U.S. energy demands.
The stringent suite of rules announced by the Environmental Protection Agency is central to President Biden’s climate change agenda to achieve a zero-emission electrical grid by 2035.
Groups opposed to fossil fuels celebrated the rules, but critics in the industry said the restrictions would threaten the stability of the nation’s electricity supply. Rising energy demands have already strained the grid.
“The path outlined by the EPA today is unlawful, unrealistic and unachievable,” said Jim Matheson, CEO of the National Rural Electric Cooperative Association. “It undermines electric reliability and poses grave consequences for an already stressed electric grid.”
Under the standard, existing coal plants and new gas-fired power plants that run more than 40% of the time would have to cut 90% of emissions by 2032.
For plants operating at more than 40% capacity, the drastic emissions cap would require nascent carbon capture and storage technologies that have not been successfully implemented in the U.S. or elsewhere.
Natural gas and coal provided nearly 60% of the nation’s electricity in 2023.
The rules are poised to face court challenges. If they are upheld, most of the nation’s coal plants will be unable to meet the stringent emissions standards and will have to shutter. Existing coal plants that agree to close by 2039 can avoid the cap.
In 2023, coal provided more than 16% of the nation’s electricity.
Sen. Joe Manchin III, West Virginia Democrat and chairman of the Energy and Natural Resources Committee, called the rules “death by a thousand cuts to America’s fossil fuel industry, especially coal.” --->READ MORE HERE
Follow link below to a related story:

Red States Challenge Biden's Coal-Plant Pollution Curbs

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