Dec 24, 2008
A federal court this week did an about-face, ruling (pdf) that the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) must enforce admittedly faulty regulations restricting power plant emissions until they're replaced by new improved ones.
"We are convinced that, notwithstanding the relative flaws of [the Clean Air Interstate Rule, CAIR], allowing CAIR to remain in effect until it is replaced by a rule consistent with our opinion would at least temporarily preserve the environmental values [translation: clean air] covered by CAIR," the federal Court of Appeals in Washington, D.C., wrote in its decision (pdf) yesterday.
As written, CAIR is the Bush administration's plan to cut emissions of acid-rain-forming sulfur dioxide (SO2), smog-causing nitrogen oxides (NOx)and soot via a cap-and-trade program. Under the plan, which will now take effect on Jan. 1, SO2 emissons are set to be reduced by 70 percent and NOx emissions by 60 percent below 2003 levels by 2015.
Nov 14, 2008 | 19
In its waning days, the Bush administration's Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has essentially halted all new construction of coal-fired power plants until the government can figure out what to do about climate-change-causing carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions. In a ruling yesterday (pdf) on a petition to build a new 110-megawatt coal-fired power plant in Bonanza, Utah, the EPA decided that it could no longer grant permits for such new construction until it determines what is needed to limit CO2 emissions.
The decision refers back to a 2007 U.S. Supreme Court ruling that found that the EPA, much to its own chagrin, has the authority to regulate emissions of CO2, the most ubiquitous greenhouse gas. In essence, permits cannot be granted until the agency figures out whether or not to force power plants to install technology to control such emissions.
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