Friday, February 3, 2012

EPA to Promote Efficiency, Gas to Reduce GHGs

EPA is soon planning to release its draft rule requiring greenhouse gas reductions from newly built or modified power plants, and they are expected to promote efficiency, natural gas and carbon capture and storage as ways to comply with the rule. 

EPA has already finalized rules requiring large GHG emitters to annually report their emissions and under another rule (PSD tailoring rule) is on the books requiring some large polluters, independent of their industry, to reduce emissions.

This new proposed rule under the New Source Performance Standards (NSPS) program would be specific to new or modified power plants and would require modern technologies to be employed to limit emissions.  The rule is expected to promote energy efficiency, natural gas and carbon capture and sequestration as fuel-neutral technology options for achieving required emissions standards.  It is not clear whether co-firing with biomass will be a recommended technology option.

EPA’s NSPS rules for GHG are the result of a court order.  On a related note, EPA is also required by the courts to issue GHG limits for refineries.

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