Do you remember all the hue and cry about how supposedly EPA's power plant regulations would cause a "train wreck" or even the lights to go out? Here is what the North American Electricity Reliability Corporation says about that political hot air at page 5 of its 2013 Summer Reliability Report:
"Assessment areas across the United States report that federal environmental regulations have minimum to no impact on operations and planning for this assessment period. The impacts of recent retirements of fossil‐fired generation are reflected in this assessment, and environmental control retrofits are not expected to impact generator outages for the summer peak."
When some of the usual suspects were hyper-ventilating last year, EPA and many others pointed out that America had massive excess generation to meet summer peaks. It still does.
In addition to the 2013 cushy cushion, new generation coming on-line plus growing demand response programs and energy efficiency will roughly equal or even exceed yearly amounts of generation retiring.
Those attacking EPA rules as a train wreck were crying wolf and, of course, the Wall Street Journal editorial page and most Republicans in Congress were only too willing to play along.