Yep: EPA definitely putting the brakes on those power plant regs

posted at 8:01 pm on April 12, 2013 by Erika Johnsen

The Environmental Protection Agency and their eco-zealot fans have been all kinds of pumped at the prospect of slapping some greenhouse-gas regulations on new power plants (a major maneuver in that war on coal they’ve been attentively waging), but last month, they hinted that they were leaning toward putting a hold on the proposed rule, which would have required that no new power plant emit more than 1,000 pounds of carbon dioxide per megawatt hour of electricity produced — and WaPo reports on confirmation of the delay from an EPA spokesperson this afternoon.

On Friday, EPA spokeswoman Alisha Johnson confirmed that the agency would not finalize the controversial proposal on time.

Johnson said in an e-mail that the agency was still reviewing more than 2 million comments on its proposal.

“We are working on the rule and no timetable has been set,” Johnson said.

Seems odd, doesn’t it, since these new regulations would have been oh-so-historical, and “restraint” really isn’t in the EPA’s wheelhouse, no? But, as it turns out, the EPA was just a tad bit too ambitious in their rule-making deliberations, and the industry complained that the proposal would have been too strict for even some natural gas facilities’ compliance, so they’re strategically retreating to revise the proposal in the face of all the legal challenges its bound to get. (Natural gas, you’ll recall, has been a driving factor in the United States’ recently declining carbon emissions, and reducing carbon emissions just happen to be environmentalists’ Stated Goal Numbero Uno. Sometimes, the federal government’s penchant for counter-productivity is truly mesmerizing.)

EPA is likely to alter the rule in some way in an effort to make sure it can withstand a legal challenge, according to sources familiar with the matter who asked not to be identified because the standard has not been finalized. One possibility could include establishing a separate standard for coal-fired power plants, as opposed to gas-fired ones.

Meanwhile, over at the Department of Interior, they’re getting ready to release their own batch of much-anticipated regulations governing hydraulic fracturing, which will also have a major impact on the natural gas industry. More on that soon.


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No word yet on the EPA’s attempts to outlaw flatulence.

Bitter Clinger on April 12, 2013 at 8:08 PM

Which of our fundamentalist environmental hypocrites will post about are needing to do it for the children.

chemman on April 12, 2013 at 8:09 PM

More likely someone at the DNC took a look at a projection of power demand vs. capacity “before” and “after” the reg would go into effect, and concluded that rolling blackouts and brownouts could get a bunch of “eco-conscious” Dems the Grayout Davis treatment if they happened before the primaries next year.

Look for the regs to be reinstated immediately after the general election in November ’14.

After which the Dems will say, “fooled you again, peasants. Now get back to building your damn mud huts.”

clear ether

eon

eon on April 12, 2013 at 8:12 PM

EVERYONE knows that vacuum cleaners are notoriously energy inefficient. Ask Gosnell!!!

WryTrvllr on April 12, 2013 at 8:13 PM

The important thing- “the hard part” – was EPA getting the power. Wielding that power is just a matter of picking winners and losers at any given point in time after that – also known as “the fun part”.

ROCnPhilly on April 12, 2013 at 8:15 PM

Read this and weep… more shinanigans from the EPA!

http://www.rightpundits.com/?p=5991

Scrumpy on April 12, 2013 at 8:25 PM

We have Kim in North Korea threatening war, Iran building nukes that will enable them to control the flow of oil from the middle east and here we sit.
We have huge reserves of oil, natural gas and coal in the ground waiting to be tapped.
We could have jobs, tax revenue and energy independence if the government would just get out of the way.
Who put these fools in charge?

countrybumpkin on April 12, 2013 at 8:26 PM

How has the sequester affected the EPA?

slickwillie2001 on April 12, 2013 at 8:36 PM

This is what they want. We have the technologies to bring a coal fired plant under whatever arbitrary carbon requirements the EPA comes up with, but nobody is going to build a plant until we know exactly what the carbon ceiling will be.

This way nothing gets done, exactly what the commies at the EPA want.

bictech on April 12, 2013 at 9:00 PM

You know what is good for Regulated utilities? Uncertainty. Guess who gets fked?

The ratepayer.

tom daschle concerned on April 12, 2013 at 9:01 PM

Scrumpy on April 12, 2013 at 8:25 PM

From your linked article:

• Maryland is considering requiring cities and counties to charge storm water fees.

Heard on Faux News this morning that Maryland passed the law. The smallest hovel will have a new property tax of $250 for allowing rain to fall upon it, Large estates and commercial developments will pay many thousands of dollars per year.

Enforcement will be through the use of Google Maps, to determine the square footage of roofing area, paved driveways, parking lots etc..

LegendHasIt on April 12, 2013 at 9:11 PM

When is Congress going to outlaw the EPA?

GarandFan on April 12, 2013 at 9:14 PM

Obama’s war on energy, aka war on American economic strength.

petefrt on April 12, 2013 at 9:16 PM

This is what they want. We have the technologies to bring a coal fired plant under whatever arbitrary carbon requirements the EPA comes up with, but nobody is going to build a plant until we know exactly what the carbon ceiling will be.

This way nothing gets done, exactly what the commies at the EPA want.

bictech on April 12, 2013 at 9:00 PM

Having dealt with more than a few of the EPA types over the course of my career I can tell you that most of them couldn’t tell you what carbon dioxide is. The carbon limits are weapons grade stupid. When you put a ton of a carbon as fuel into a furnace and burn it you’re going to get real close to a ton of carbon released on the other end, just in a different form. These morons just don’t get that if you want to have electricity on the scale we have you’re going to have to burn something. Unicorn farts and fairy dust just won’t cut it.

Oldnuke on April 12, 2013 at 9:26 PM

It wouldn’t be the first time that a regulator pulled a number out of his ear that wasn’t physically possible to achieve.

30 years ago when I worked at Tektronix, the FCC issued a regulation about how much emitted radiation was permitted from scope probes. The number looked good, but it was physically impossible to achieve without changing the Universal Electrical Constant. A couple of our EE’s had to take a trip to Washington to give that FCC regulator a remedial Physics lesson.

Steven Den Beste on April 12, 2013 at 9:34 PM

Sometimes, the federal government’s penchant for counter-productivity is truly mesmerizing.

They can’t admit they’re winning the war on pollution, or that some animals, previously thought to be extinct, are coming back, or actually that humans have a place in nature.

Enviromentalism is their religion. We are sinners against Gaia. They can’t let it go.

PattyJ on April 12, 2013 at 10:51 PM

I hope that when the country runs short of energy because of EPA foolishness that all EPA offices and vehicles are cut off FIRST

….so that the rest of us can have transportation, food, refrigerators, cooling and heating,

…and telephone service so we can call our legislators to urge an expedited shutdown of this abysmally stupid and counterproductive rogue agency.

landlines on April 12, 2013 at 11:51 PM

Enviromentalism is their religion. We are sinners against Gaia. They can’t let it go.

PattyJ on April 12, 2013 at 10:51 PM

True! In their warped world the well-being of animals trumps the well being of humans.

KW64 on April 13, 2013 at 1:05 AM

I just did some math. Assuming 30 gigajoules per metric tonne of anthracite (which is pretty much pure carbon) then the energy released to produce 1000 pounds of carbon dioxide is 3.7 gigajoules.

A gigawatt-hour is 3.6 gigajoules. To achieve this standard it would be necessary for the system to be 97% efficient — and that’s physically impossible under the laws of Thermodynamics.

Methane produces somewhat more energy per kilogram of CO2 but not THAT much more; this would probably be impossible for a methane plant too.

Steven Den Beste on April 13, 2013 at 1:31 AM

No energy production. Live in the cold and the dark.

These are the real EPA rules.

MTF on April 13, 2013 at 9:01 AM

Don’t be fooled – just because the EPA is retreating on this issue, it does not mean that they aren’t still issuing a ton of regulations for power plants (and other industries). They still have ELG’s (effluent guidelines), Clean Water Act 316(b) regs (cooling water intake), and other regs coming out this year. Also, look for them to replicate the nutrient criteria that they forced on Florida to the other states in the near future.

specialkayel on April 13, 2013 at 1:59 PM