EPA Moves Forward As Harvard Recognizes Billions of “Hidden” Clean Power Plan Benefits

Despite the setback delivered by the Supreme Court’s stay, action around the Clean Power Plan has not disappeared. Instead, the Environmental Protection Agency’s historic regulation is on the verge of another public input period and is also the focus of a recent Harvard study.

What’s more, EPA has a new proposal out and an upcoming public comment period related to the voluntary early-action piece of the Clean Power Plan, known as the Clean Energy Incentive Program (CEIP). After hearing from stakeholders during a previous public comment period that ended in mid-December 2015, EPA has made some significant changes to the proposed CEIP. Most importantly, EPA has expanded the range of projects eligible for CEIP participation to include solar projects implemented to serve low-income communities.

SCOTUS Nominee Merrick Garland and Environmental Regulation

Today, at a live event in the Rose Garden, President Obama nominated Merrick Garland, currently the chief judge of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit. Reminding everyone that “people don’t stop working during their last term,” President Obama urged Senators to act in a bipartisan fashion and move forward with nomination hearings in order to fill the vacant seat left on the Supreme Court after Justice Antonin Scalia passed away in February.
Although there is sure to be a political battle around the nomination, we look to Judge Garland’s record on environmental issues to shed some light on how the Supreme Court may handle future environmental cases, like the current challenge to the Clean Power Plan pending in the lower court.

Guest Post: Polluters are Making the Same Old “Sky is Falling” Claims about the Clean Power Plan

The ink wasn’t even dry on the Clean Power Plan before some power companies filed lawsuits to challenge these historic public health protections.

One of their key complaints? How much the Clean Power Plan is allegedly going to cost.

In their court filing, these companies claimed that they’ll potentially need to spend “billions of dollars” to comply.

This tactic is nothing new, and it’s something we often hear when the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) issues a new regulation that will provide cleaner, healthier air for our communities and families.

But it’s almost always wrong.

In defiance of the “sky is falling” predictions, American industry innovates and figures out ways to comply with new, healthier standards at a fraction of the costs initially projected.

The Supreme Court, the Mercury Rule and Chicken Little

Last week, the United States Supreme Court heard oral arguments in a challenge to the Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) Mercury and Air Toxics Standard (MATS), set to go into effect next month. The MATS rule, finalized in December 2011, requires coal-fired power plants to reduce emissions of toxic air pollutants through the installation of pollution […]

Catch-22: New EPA Mercury Rule Ties Up Plant Washington

On March 28, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) announced a revised final Mercury and Air Toxics Standard (MATS) rule for new air emission sources (i.e. new power plants). The revised final rule is slightly weaker than the original December 2011 rule, due in part to power plant developers’ complaints that the original standard was unattainable, but […]

Tour with a Twist: What is Ripe to Retire in Georgia and Alabama?

Last week I had the privilege of accompanying experts from the Union of Concerned Scientists (UCS) on a three-day tour of Georgia and Alabama to highlight coal plants that should be considered for retirement. UCS is a national, science-based non-profit that advocates for policy decisions that are based on credible research. UCS’s report, Ripe for […]

Georgia Power takes major step away from dirty coal

Southern Alliance for Clean Energy applauds Georgia Power’s January 7 announcement that it will seek approval to retire several of its least economical, oldest, and dirtiest electric generators – 2061 MW worth of mostly coal-fired units, plus a handful of smaller oil-fired units. We’re glad the company is finally seeking retirement of these units; the […]

Attacks Against Clean Air Keep Coming

They say that bad things come in threes. Recently we’ve seen three very bad ideas to attack and undermine the Clean Air Act on three of the worst categories of air pollution coming from coal-fired power plants and other fossil fuel industries. First the pollutants: (1) mercury pollution; (2) the traditional criteria pollutants sulfur dioxide […]

Instead of Coal, Santa and EPA Bring Relief from Toxic Mercury

With less than a week to go before Christmas, you might think that this post is about an early present. In fact, it’s about a late present—two decades late—but it is a fantastic present anyway. Today, after more than two decades of delay, EPA has finally announced strong, life-saving emission limits for mercury from coal […]

Enough Lies and Misinformation

Environmental Protection Agency Administrator Lisa Jackson is set to finalize a crucial new clean air rule to limit mercury pollution. Meanwhile opponents of clean energy are tripping over themselves to have the most outlandish (and erroneous) criticisms of the rule. For instance, the Atlanta Journal Constitution reported the following on December 15th: Athens[, GA] Republican […]