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Utilities Coalition Challenging Trump's ACE Plan (Ind. Report)
Power Companies Climate Coalition
Date: 2019-09-18
Reuters is reporting New York-based Con Edison and eight other U.S. utilities -- the Power Companies Climate Coalition -- have filed a legal challenge to the Trump administration's Affordable Clean Energy (ACE) plan to cut carbon emissions from power plants. Trump's plan replaces the Obama administration's Clean Power Plan that would have cut power plant carbon emissions by more than a third from 2005 levels by 2030 by virtually eliminating coal-fired power production.

According to the filing, Trump's Affordable Clean Energy (ACE) rule undermines efforts already under way to reduce greenhouse gas emissions by investing in renewable energy, electric vehicle infrastructure and energy efficiency and other clean technologies.

ACE allows states three years to devise their own plans to cut emissions mainly by encouraging coal-fired power plants to improve efficiency.

The coalition members include: Con Edison, Exelon Corp, National Grid, PG&E Corp, Public Service Enterprise Group Inc, Los Angeles Department of Water and Power, Seattle City Light, Sacramento Municipal Utility District and New York Power Authority. (Source: Con Edison, Guardian, Reuters, 16 Sept., 2019)

More Low-Carbon Energy News Power Companies Climate Coalition,  Obama Clean Power Plan,  Affordable Clean Energy Plan ,  


States, Cities Coalition Tackle Trump's ACE Rule (Ind. Report)
Trump.Obama Clean Power Plan
Date: 2019-08-14
Reuters is reporting New York and California, along with 20 other states and seven cities on Tuesday sued to challenge the Trump administration EPA's replacement of the Obama administration's Clean Power Plan.

The suit claims the Trump Affordable Clean Energy (ACE) rule will prolong the country's reliance on coal power, hinder states that pursue cleaner electricity generation, will not curb rising power plant carbon emissions and will prolong the operation of dirtier coal plants. (Source: HPMG News, Various Media, Reuters 13 Aug., 2019)

More Low-Carbon Energy News Affordable Clean Energy ruke,  ACE Rule,  Carbon Emissions,  Climate Change,  Trump,  Obama Clean Power Plan,  


Notable Quote -- Obama Clean Power Plan v.s. Trump Affordable Clean Energy Plan
Obama Clean Power Plan
Date: 2019-07-12
"You can see just with that comparison (with the Obama Clean Energy Plan) that the Trump (Affordable Clean Energy) plan is actually designed to do almost nothing to deal with carbon pollution from the electric power sector.

"It's very interesting that a rule that purports to be trying to reduce pollution -- by their own projection -- might increase it. There is a part of the proposal that would allow coal plants to update, allowing them to run longer without putting any pollution controls on. That's kind of a life extension project for coal plants.

"So a policy that says that it's supposed to be reducing pollution actually increases it under certain projections. And I think a court might have a hard time with that and say how could this be defended as a rational plan." -- Jody Freeman, Former Obama White House Counselor for Energy and Climate Change; founder of the Harvard University Environment and Energy Law Program (Source: NPR News, 12 July, 2019)

More Low-Carbon Energy News Obama Clean Power Plam news,  Trump Afordable Clean Energy Plan news,  


Statement from a Coalition of Free-Market State Think Tanks on Trump Administration Affordable Clean Energy Rule (Opinions, Editorials & Asides)
Affordable Clean Energy Plan
Date: 2019-06-28
Editor's Note: This publication, its editors and administration neither agrees or disagrees with the views presented in the following statement from the McIver Institute

"The Trump administration's finalized Affordable Clean Energy (ACE) rule is a major victory for America's middle class, many of whom work in energy intensive industries like manufacturing and mining. It also represents a boon to America's least fortunate for whom energy costs represent a significant part of their budget. All Americans would have been harmed by the Obama administration's legally flawed Clean Power Plan. It would have dramatically increased the cost of electricity and was predicted to reduce global warming by only 0.018 degrees Celsius by 2100, an amount far too small to be measured.

"After Congress rejected proposed cap-and-trade legislation, the Obama administration crafted the Clean Power Plan to force states into regional cap-and-trade plans. President Trump's plan disallows such plans for compliance and focuses, instead, on improving the efficiencies of individual plants.

"The Clean Power Plan claimed to seek a 32 pct reduction in CO2 emissions from 2005 levels by 2030, at an estimated compliance cost of $9 billion. The US Chamber of Commerce estimated a more realistic $75 billion in compliance costs. The Rule was met with bipartisan opposition by 27 states who won a Supreme Court stay of the Rule in 2016.

"The Clean Power Plan was also completely unnecessary. Thanks to the Trump administration's commonsense approach, emissions have fallen by 28 pct since 2017 and are forecast to be reduced 35 pct by 2030. At a compliance cost of $0.3 billion for the ACE rule, these gains were at 250 times less cost than the previous administration's alternative." -- The MacIver Institute

The MacIver Institute is joined by the Caesar Rodney Institute, the Center of the American Experiment, the Commonwealth Foundation, the Independence Institute, John Locke Foundation, the Mackinac Center for Public Policy, the Mississippi Center for Public Policy, the Rhode Island Center for Freedom & Prosperity, the Rio Grande Foundation, and the Roughrider Policy Center in supporting the ACE. (Source: MacIver Institute, June, 2019) Contact: The John K. MacIver Institute for Public Policy Brett Healy, President 608.588.6477, bhealy@maciverinstitute.com, www.maciverinstitute.com

More Low-Carbon Energy News Obama Clean Power Plan,  Trump,  Affordable Clean Energy,  


EPA Rolls Back Obama's Coal-Plant Clean Power Plan (Reg. & Leg.)
Obama Clean Power Plan
Date: 2019-06-21
The Republican Trump administration's EPA has over ruled former President Barack Obama's Clean Power Plan with the introduction of its Affordable Clean Energy rule allowing states to set their own carbon emissions standards for coal-fired power plants.

As absurd and politically motivated as it may appear, the EPA's new rule could, by the agency's own admission, result in 1,400 more premature deaths by 2030 than the Obama-era plan it will replace.

The Obama Clean Power Plan, which was never officially implemented, would have prevented 3,600 premature deaths a year, 1,700 heart attacks and 90,000 asthma attacks, as well as cut greenhouse gas emissions by up to 32 pct compared to 2005 levels, according to analysis conducted by the Obama era EPA.

The Trump administration's plan is a shamefully thin- veiled move to support the coal industry, as promised in his election campaign. Environmental groups and several states who see Trump's action as detrimental to clean air and efforts to fight the climate crisis have already given notice of impending action against the Trump plan. (Source: EPA, Various Media, 19 June, 2019)

More Low-Carbon Energy News Obama Clean Power Plan,  Coal,  Carbon Emissions,  


US Meeting Obama's Climate Targets, Despite Trump (Ind. Report)
US EIA
Date: 2018-10-31
Yesterday, the US Energy Information Administration (EIA) released data confirming that the U.S. power sector's CO2 emissions have dropped 28 pct since 2005, on target with the Obama administration's Clean Power Plan aimed at reducing carbon emissions by 32 pct t by 2030.

The EIA attributes this drop to a declining demand for energy, a move to renewable energy, an abundance of inexpensive natural gas and dropping coal consumption.

According to Union of Concerned Scientists President Kenneth Kimmell, "the trend is expected to continue despite President Donald Trump's efforts."

For your interest, the Obama Clean Power plan can be downloaded HERE. (Source: US EIA, Earther, 29 Oct., 2018)

More Low-Carbon Energy News US EIA,  Clean Power Plan,  Carbon Emissions,  


Trump Dumps Obama Era Clean Air Act (Reg & Leg)
Clean Power Plan
Date: 2018-08-22
It is being widely reported that acting EPA Administrator Andrew Wheeler has signed a proposal calling for individual states to regulate power plant emissions, unlike the Obama administration's Clean Power Plan that made the regulation of power plant emissions a federal responsibility.

The new EPA proposal, which is projected to release 12 times the amount of carbon dioxide into the atmosphere compared with Obama's Clean Power Plan, flies in the face of the 2015 Clean Power Plan requiring states to meet specific carbon emission reduction standards based on their individual energy production and consumption.

Obama's plan was challenged as "unconstitutional" and outside the federal government's power to regulate. (Source: Various Media, WSJ, Various Media, 21 Aug., 2018)

More Low-Carbon Energy News Carbon Emissions,  Obama Clean Power Plan,  


Apple Opposes Repeal of Obama Clean Power Plan (Ind. Report)
Apple
Date: 2018-04-09
In response to EPA Administrator Scott Pruitt's announced plan to cancel the Obama administration's Clean Power Plan (CPP) , communications giant Apple issued the following "public comment" in opposition to the Trump administration's proposed rule changes:

"Apple is committed to leaving the world better than we found it. Part of our commitment is to reduce our own impact on climate change by using renewable energy sources and driving energy efficiency in our products and facilities. However, we believe that governments, as well as industry leaders, must take a lead role in the global battle to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and fight climate change. For a number of reasons, EPA should not repeal the Clean Power Plan."

According to Apple, adopting the plan would help the US become a global leader in the effort to reduce greenhouse gas emissions. Apple adds that its own efforts have shown that the CPP's targets are achievable without negatively impacting reliability or resiliency.

In 2016, Apple, Amazon, Google and Microsoft filed a joint brief to the Supreme Court supporting the CPP and its goals. (Source: Apple, April, 2018)

More Low-Carbon Energy News Obama Clean Power Plan,  


"If You Love the Taste of a Lobster Stew, Served by a Window with a Cape Cod View" -- APCC Opposes Repeal of Clean Power Plan (Opinions, Editorials & Asides)
Association to Preserve Cape Cod
Date: 2018-01-12
Citing concerns about increased severity and frequency of coastal storms, sea level rise, coastal erosion and other existing and future adverse impacts from climate change to the Cape Cod region, the not-for-profit environmental group Association to Preserve Cape Cod (APCC) submitted a letter to U.S. EPA kingpin Scott Pruitt opposing the agency's proposed plan to repeal the Obama era Clean Power Plan requiring significant reductions in electrical power plant CO2 emissions. Repeal of the Clean Power Plan would lift those restrictions and allow for continued and potentially increased use of coal to fire the nation's power plants.

Highlights of APCC communication include: " Climate change has emerged as the greatest environmental threat facing our (Cape Cod) region's natural resources, economy and human population. Cape Cod communities are already experiencing worsening impacts from sea level rise, coastal erosion and an increase in frequency and severity of coastal storms associated with a changing climate.

"Electrical power plants fired by fossil fuels are responsible for 31 percent of the greenhouse gas emissions in the U.S. -- the single largest source of greenhouse gas pollution in the nation. Any effort to effectively reduce the greenhouse gasses that cause climate change must include a substantial reduction in power plant emissions levels. The Clean Power Plan would achieve that objective.

"Issuance of the Clean Power Plan by the EPA in 2015, with its requirement for significant reductions in CO2 pollution emissions from power plants, has been the most important step to date taken by the U.S. to address climate change. Implementation of the CPP would set our nation on the right track toward mitigating climate change and its impacts, and it would secure the U.S.'s position as a responsible global partner in the effort to control CO2 emissions.

"The EPA has a legal requirement under the Clean Air Act -- requirement that was upheld by the U.S. Supreme Court -- to regulate CO2 as a pollutant that endangers human health. Repeal of the CPP would be in direct conflict with the EPA's charge to protect the nation's environment and the health of its citizens, a responsibility entrusted to the agency since its establishment in 1970." (Source: Association to Preserve Cape Cod, CapeCodToday, 10 Jan., 2018) Contact: Association to Preserve Cape Cod, Andrew Gottlieb, Exec. Dir., (508) 619-3185, www.apcc.org

More Low-Carbon Energy News Obama Clean Power Plan,  EPA,  Clean Power Plan,  Pruitt,  


EPA Under the Gun on Obama Climate Rule Changes (Reg & Leg)
EPA
Date: 2018-01-08
It is being widely reported that the Trump administration EPA administrator Scott Pruitt is under the gun to repeal and replace the Obama administration's Clean Power Plan before the year end.

Obama's rule aimed to cut carbon levels 32 pct below 2005 levels by 2030. Under Trump, the EPA is expected to do little more than consider coal plant efficiency upgrades which would do little to curb emissions.

(Source: Politico, Twitter, 5 Jan., 2018) Contact: EPA Scott Pruitt, www.facebook.com/EPAScottPruitt; www.epa.gov/aboutepa/about-office-administrator

More Low-Carbon Energy News EPA,  Scott Pruitt,  ,  Obama Clean Power Plan,  Carbon Emissions,  


Trump's Obama Clean Power Plan Repeal Effort Expected (Reg & Leg)
EPA,Clean Power Plan
Date: 2017-10-09
According to Bloomberg, CNN and others, the US EPA still plans to propose the repeal of the Obama administration's Clean Power Plan meant to curb primarily coal-burning lower generation plant greenhouse gas emissions. The proposed repeal effort is in line with Trump's string of executive orders seemingly aimed at discrediting the Obama administration and challenging the legality of the Clean Power Plan itself. The proposed repeal -- see attached -- is widely expected to be launched this week.

Review the full EPA proposal HERE. (Source: EPA, CNN, Various Others, Oct. 7, 2017)

More Low-Carbon Energy News EPA Pruitt,  Clean Power Plan,  Carbon Emissions,  


Appeals Court Stalls on Obama Clean Power Plan Ruling (Reg & Leg)
Clean Power Plan
Date: 2017-05-03
At the Trump administration's request, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit has agreed to postpone a ruling on lawsuits challenging Obama-era Clean Power Plan restrictions on carbon emissions. The government had asked the court to put a hold on the case shortly after President Donald Trump signed an executive order vowing to roll back the Clean Power Plan.

The regulations were challenged by a coalition of states and industry groups that profit or benefit from burning coal. Environmental groups have opposed the delay and urged the court to rule. (Source: Salina Journal, Various Media, 2 May, 2017)

More Low-Carbon Energy News Clean Power Plan,  Carbon Emissions,  


Hickenlooper Takes a Stand on Obama Clean Power Plan (Ind. Report)
John Hickenlooper
Date: 2017-04-03
In Denver, Colorado Gov. John Hickenlooper (Dem) is taking a stand against Trump's move to quash the Obama Clean Power Plan. Hickenlooper says his state, the seventh-largest energy producing state in the U.S., will not be deterred by Trump's agenda and will continue its push to increased renewable energy and slashing carbon pollution.

According to the governor, Colorado has been addressing climate change since at least 2004, when voters approved a measure requiring utilities to source a minimum of 10 pct of their power from renewable sources by 2015. The target was later increased to 30 pct by 2020. In 2010, the state enacted legislation requiring utilities to replace some coal-fired electrical generating plants with natural gas facilities.

According to a spokesperson for the governor, Colorado has not yet met the goals but is on track to do so by 2030 -- the deadline in the Clean Power Plan for U.S. states to cut carbon emissions 30 pct. Although some states favour Trump's move others are moving ahead on their own initiatives to cut carbon emissions or encourage renewable energy. (Source: Office of Gov. John Hickenlooper, LMTonline, AP, 29 Mar., 2017) Contact: Colorado Gov. John Hickenlooper, (303) 866-2471, www.colorado.gov/governor

More Low-Carbon Energy News John Hickenlooper,  Obama Clean Power Plan,  Carbon Emissions,  Trump,  


Governors Reaffirm Commitment to Clean Power Plan Targets (Opinions, Editorials & Aside)
Clean Power Plan
Date: 2017-03-31
With the Trump administration's announcement that the U.S. will begin to dismantle Obama's Clean Power Plan, California Governor Edmund (Jerry) Brown and New York Governor Andrew M. Cuomo have issued issued the following statement reaffirming their ongoing commitment to exceed the targets of the Clean Power Plan and curb carbon pollution:

"Dismantling the Clean Power Plan and other critical climate programs is profoundly misguided and shockingly ignores basic science. With this move, the Administration will endanger public health, our environment and our economic prosperity.

"Climate change is real and will not be wished away by rhetoric or denial. We stand together with a majority of the American people in supporting bold actions to protect our communities from the dire consequences of climate change.

"Together, California and New York represent approximately 60 million people and 20 percent of the nation's GDP . With or without Washington, we will work with our partners throughout the world to aggressively fight climate change and protect our future."

California and New York lead the nation in ground-breaking policies to combat climate change. Both states -- which account for roughly 10 pct of U.S. greenhouse gas emissions in the United States -- have adopted advanced energy efficiency and renewable energy programs to meet and exceed the requirements of the Clean Power Plan and have set some of the most aggressive greenhouse gas emission reduction targets in North America -- 40 percent below 1990 levels by 2030 and 80 percent below 1990 levels by 2050. California and New York will continue to work closely together and with other states to help fill the void left by the federal government. These efforts complement California and New York's ongoing efforts to broaden collaboration among sub-national leaders on climate change, including through the Under2 Coalition -- a pact among cities, states and countries around the world to limit the increase in global average temperature to below 2 degrees Celsius in order to avoid potentially catastrophic consequences. California and New York are among the Under2 Coalition's 167 jurisdictions representing more than one billion people and $25.9 trillion in combined GDP -- more than one-third of the global economy. (Source: Office of Gov. Jerry Brown, PR, 28 Mar., 2017)Contact: Governor of California, Edmund G. (Jerry) Browm, (916) 445-2841, http://gov.ca.gov; N.Y. Gov. Andrew Cuomo, www.governor.ny.gov

More Low-Carbon Energy News Obama Clean Power Plan,  Jerry Brown,  Andrew Cuomo,  


Brookings Comments on Trump's Executive Order on Energy Independence (Opinions, Editorials & Asides)
Brookings Institution
Date: 2017-03-29
"First and most prominently, the (Trump) executive order directs the Environmental Protection Agency to review the Clean Power Plan, one of Obama's key regulatory actions to drive down greenhouse gas emissions in the electric power sector. Because an executive order cannot directly overturn a regulation, the EPA will have to come to a finding about whether the CPP should be revised or repealed. Technically, the EPA does not have an option to repeal and not replace, because the Supreme Court has already ruled that the current interpretation of the Clean Air Act -- the legislation upon which the CPP is based -- requires the EPA to regulate carbon dioxide as a pollutant. Repeal without replacement would contravene the Supreme Court's order, so Trump's EPA must come up with an alternative that will hold up in court.

"Second, dismantling the CPP would put the U.S. on a higher pollution and less ambitious emissions track in the medium term. The CPP targeted a roughly 32 percent decrease in CO2 emissions from the power sector by 2030, primarily from accelerating the long-term shift away from coal-fired electricity generation. In addition to having impacts on the U.S. economy and health, removing the CPP would imply a costly delay in implementing what in the long run will be necessary reductions in our overall greenhouse gas emissions over time. In addition, the approach in the CPP was developed over many years of consultation with industry, health advocates, states, and other stakeholders. While it would impact coal, it did provide a reasonable approach to reducing the most harmful emissions and steering the economy toward a sounder energy system for the future.

"In addition, while Trump argues that the CPP rollback will benefit jobs, he is referring to a relatively small set of interests. While it is important to be mindful of the need to blunt the potential economic hardship that people working in dying industries face, even insiders acknowledge that the coal sector is not going to recover even with these rules rolled back, not least because of mechanization. Recent Department of Energy statistics show that the coal mining industry employed roughly 66,000 miners in 2015, compared to an estimated 3 million jobs supported by clean energy. Therefore, the likely impact of the order on the coal industry will be fairly weak in the near term and, at best, mediocre in the long term. While reversing the moratorium on new coal mining leases will open new sources of supply, it will not in itself reverse the trends in energy markets that have increasingly favored gas. In addition, other regulations to control air pollution will continue to restrict the burning of coal for electricity.

"Dismantling the CPP would have an effect on the overall U.S. climate strategy and will make it harder and more expensive to achieve the necessary levels of greenhouse gas emissions in the longer term. But it is also important to remember that the CPP, in targeting roughly one-third of overall U.S. greenhouse gas emissions, is only one part of the overall strategy to drive down U.S. emissions. Electricity currently makes up about 39 percent of U.S. energy use and is responsible for about 30 percent of overall U.S. greenhouse gas emissions. While many of the most inexpensive and economically efficient opportunities for emissions reductions exist in the power sector, a number of other areas that will continue to see efficiency gains, such as in appliance and equipment standards and the first round of auto fuel economy standards implemented under Obama. As one example, existing appliance and equipment efficiency standards are expected to reduce U.S. CO2 emissions by 3 billion tons by 2030 -- fully half of the estimated reductions from the CPP." (Source: The Brookings Institution, Nathan Hultman, March 28, 2017)

Note:The prestigious Brookings Institution is a century-old, Washington, DC-headquartered nonprofit public policy think tank that conducts in-depth research that leads to new ideas for solving problems facing society at the local, national and global level. -- Brookings www.brookings.edu



More Low-Carbon Energy News Climate Change,  Donald Trump,  Obama Clean Power Plan,  Carbon Emissions,  


Novozymes Cites Markets, Policy Uncertainty for Cutbacks (Int'l)
Novozymes
Date: 2017-01-20
In Copenhagen, enzymes specialist Novozymes reports it will cut 198 jobs and invest more in emerging markets. The company cited uncertainty over US renewable energy policy, low oil prices and the takeover of Monsanto as key factors in the cutback, according to Reuters.

According to the company, the US market for biofuels is facing uncertainty as the incoming Trump administration could cut back the Obama Clean Power Plan designed cut utility greenhouse gas emissions as well as the Renewable Fuels Standard ethanol and biodiesel- gasoline blend program. (Source: Novozymes, 18 Jan., 2017) Contact: Novozymes. Peder Holk Nielsen, CEO, Michael Burns, Biorefining Business Development North America, Peter Halling, VP Biofuel, (919) 496-6926, www.novozymes.com

More Low-Carbon Energy News Novozymes,  Biofuel,  Enzymes,  BViofuel Blend,  RFS,  


States Want Obama Clean Power Plan Quashed ... NOW! (Reg & Leg)
Clean Power Plan
Date: 2016-12-21
SeeNews is reporting that a coalition of twenty-four states and state agencies have written to President-elect Donald Trump, VP-elect Michael Pence, and U.S. Senate and House of Representative leaders requesting an executive order on the first day of the Trump administration cancelling the Obama administration's Clean Power Plan.

The coalition includes West Virginia, Texas, Alabama, Arizona, Arkansas, Colorado, Georgia, Indiana, Kansas, Kentucky, Louisiana, Michigan, Missouri, Montana, Nebraska, North Dakota, Ohio, South Carolina, South Dakota, Utah, Wisconsin, Wyoming, as well as the Mississippi and North Carolina departments of environmental quality.

The 24-state coalition claims the Clean Power Plan is unlawful, unconstitutional and at odds with section 111 of the Clean Air Act, which prohibits the EPA mandating that states implement emission reductions relying on the elimination of operations at a regulated source. (Source: SeeNews, Various Others, 19 Dec., 2016)

More Low-Carbon Energy News EPA,  Clean Power Plan,  

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