Greenhouse gas emissions

The Aviation Endangerment Finding

While we are watching the political conventions, EPA took an important step forward

Last Monday, EPA issued a formal finding that carbon emissions from commercial aviation endanger human health and welfare.   Understanding the significance of the finding requires a little background. Section 231(a)(2) of the Clean Air Act directs the EPA Administrator to “issue proposed emission standards applicable to the emission of any air pollutant from any class …

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The End-game for Diablo Canyon?

A landmark agreement supports the closure of a controversial nuclear plant.

Today’s announcement that the Pacific Gas & Electric Company (PG&E) has reached an agreement with several environmental and labor groups to plan for the eventual shutdown of the Diablo Canyon Nuclear Plant is a stunning development, when viewed in an historical perspective. PG&E has agreed not to seek new licenses for its power plant that …

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Creating An Exit Strategy for Our Use of Natural Gas

To meet long-term greenhouse gas reduction goals, all fossil fuels have to go, even natural gas.

Coal is the climate’s Public Enemy #1. The use of natural gas has helped to ensure that the coal problem has not become even worse. Without natural gas, we would use more coal for space heating and for many more industrial processes than is currently the practice. Without natural gas, our reliance on coal for …

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Clean Power Plan Litigation Kick-Off

Flood of lawsuits follows publication of EPA rules to regulate power-plant GHGs

*Updated: Nov. 17, 2015* On Friday, October 23, 2015, the Federal Register formally published EPA’s rules to control greenhouse-gas emissions from fossil-fuel-fired power plants under the Clean Air Act. I described the basics of the rules after EPA released the unofficial text in August. The final text of the rule to regulate new and modified …

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Is Carbon Capture & Sequestration (CCS) the Biggest Threat to the Clean Power Plan?

Exploring potential challenges to EPA’s New Source Performance Standard: PART I

This post is the first in a mini-series exploring likely legal challenges to EPA’s New Source Performance Standard (NSPS) for power-plant greenhouse gas emissions under Clean Air Act § 111(b), and how those challenges might affect the Clean Power Plan. I will leave detailed exploration of the Clean Power Plan for later posts, but suffice …

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Australia’s repeal of its carbon tax

A lot of (bad) environmental law news has been coming out of Australia recently. The new Liberal government has attempted to dump dredging spoils on the Great Barrier Reef and open up protected Tasmanian forests to logging. But most importantly, the government has repealed the carbon tax enacted by the prior Labor government. The Australian …

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A Roadmap for State Comments on the Clean Power Plan

Considerations for State Regulators Tackling EPA’s §111(d) Proposed Rule

Yesterday, EPA announced its decision to extend the comment period on the Clean Power Plan—the agency’s proposed rule to regulate power plant greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions under Clean Air Act § 111(d)—until December 1, 2014. The comment period was originally scheduled to last 120 days, until October 16th. You can find a list of compiled …

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Congressman Waxman Tells FERC: Read UC Berkeley’s Climate Change Study

Henry Waxman urges FERC to act on greenhouse gas emissions.

In a Congressional hearing this morning, Congressman Henry Waxman had a rare chance to face all five sitting members of the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) at the same time to talk about climate change. He took the opportunity to point out UC Berkeley’s recent report on FERC’s authority under existing law to reduce greenhouse …

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General Permits and the Regulation of Greenhouse Gases

The Supreme Court ignored a major option for effective regulation

Author’s Note:  The following post is co-authored by Eric Biber and J.B. Ruhl, the David Daniels Allen Distinguished Chair of Law and the Co-Director of the Energy, Environment, and Land Use Program at Vanderbilt Law School. It is also cross-posted at Reg Blog.  Reg Blog, supported by the U Penn Program on Regulation is an …

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How Scalia Might Have Ended the Best Hope of Killing EPA’s Greenhouse Gas Rules

The Supreme Court may have just eliminated a major legal and political risk to EPA’s greenhouse gas regulatory program

A couple of folks have already written about the UARG decision, and there is surely more to understand about the implications of the Scalia majority decision for future EPA greenhouse gas regulatory efforts. But I want to highlight one key implication of the decision for EPA’s overall greenhouse gas regulatory program. First, it is important …

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