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OEHHA proposes to list "emissions from coal combustion" under California's Proposition 65

OEHHA, the State regulatory agency overseeing the administration of Propositon 65, has announced its intent to list "emissions from the combustion of coal" as a carcinogen. See http://www.oehha.ca.gov/prop65/CRNR_notices/admin_listing/intent_to_list/noil060713coal.html . The emissions at issue...

Jenner & Block: New Report Concludes No Material GHG Emissions From Keystone XL Pipeline

In the recent debate surrounding the pending Keystone XL pipeline decision, new questions have been raised about the pipeline's potential impact on greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions. President Barack Obama has indicated that the relative emissions related to increased Canadian oil sands processing in...

Does Preemption Prevent Redress For Homeowners Impacted By Polluters' Air Emissions?

On April 23, 2012, residents of rural Muscatine, Iowa filed a class action lawsuit titled, Laurie Freeman et al. v. Grain Processing Corporation (case no. LACV 021232), in the Iowa District Court for Muscatine County. The defendant, Grain Processing Corporation, is an Iowa manufacturer of corn syrup...

CAA Settlement Requires Violator to Invest in Improving Energy Efficiency of Other Buildings

By Marc Karell, P.E., CEM, Climate Change & Environmental Services, LLC In September of 2013, HA Industries of Oregon, IL, a manufacturer of coatings and resin-coated sands, settled charges that it violated the Clean Air Act. No big deal here. This happens all the time. Like many such settlements...

Proposed Federal Strategies to Reduce Methane Emissions

While energy conservation, reducing fossil fuel combustion to reduce greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions, is important to combat climate change, another GHG of importance is methane (CH 4 ), which is 21 times more potent than CO 2. CH 4 emissions do not derive from combustion, but instead from natural decomposition...

Supreme Court Affirms In Part, Reverses In Part Clean Air Act Ruling

WASHINGTON, D.C. — (Mealey's) The U.S. Supreme Court today reversed in part and affirmed in part a District of Columbia Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals ruling as to whether the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency could require companies emitting greenhouse gases (GHGs) to obtain permits for...

EPA Appears to Have Green Light to Develop Regulations on Utility Power Plant Greenhouse Gas Emissions

Efforts by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to regulate greenhouse gas emissions just cleared a significant hurdle through a recent U.S. Supreme Court decision, which appears to give the agency a green light to move forward with its development of a regulatory regime concerning utility...

Ohio’s Fugitive Emissions Regulations

By Zahava Bennett and Eli Humphries Many energy prospectors, including the T. Boone Pickens, have viewed natural gas as a bridge fuel leading to a more sustainable future. Although natural gas burns cleaner than other fossil fuels, there is concern that a valuable resource is being wasted and additional...

What Does Regulation of Greenhouse Gas Emissions as Described by EPA in the “Tailoring Rule” Have to Do With the Clean Air Act?

UARG v. EPA (Tailoring Rule Litigation) This summer, Justice Scalia delivered the opinion of the U.S. Supreme Court [lexis.com subscribers may access Supreme Court briefs and the opinion for this case] on the question of whether EPA motor vehicle greenhouse gas regulations necessarily automatically...

The Clean Power Plan: A View from FERC

By J. Wylie Donald It was innocuous enough: Conference on Environmental Regulations; but the plainness of title belied what was going on at the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission at the first public forum at FERC on EPA's Clean Power Plan. It played to overflow crowds. Notwithstanding arriving...

Ohio EPA Seeks Early Stakeholder Input on Sulfur Dioxide Rules

Ohio EPA is seeking early stakeholder input[1] on potential amendments to Ohio’s sulfur dioxide regulations as part of the five-year rule review process mandated by ORC §119.032, [ enhanced version available to lexis.com subscribers ]. The rules, which are found at Ohio Administrative Code...

States Should Think Twice Before Refusing Any Response to EPA’s Clean Power Rules

The date is approaching for EPA to finalize its rules for controlling carbon dioxide emissions from existing power plants, and states are contemplating their responses to those rules. A number of commentators have recommended that states “just say no” to EPA and refuse to prepare state plans...

EU Seeks to Balance Emissions Controls and Global Competitiveness

The European Union has placed a growing emphasis on climate change policies in recent years, and the week of June 15–19 marked the 10 th annual European Union Sustainable Energy Week focusing on “sustainable mobility,” decarbonisation, and other energy topics. Earlier this year, the...

Democratic Senators Introduce Carbon Tax Bill

On Wednesday, June 10, two Democratic Senators (Sheldon Whitehouse of Rhode Island and Brian Schatz of Hawaii) introduced a bill that would impose a carbon tax of $45 per ton of carbon emissions. For other greenhouse gases, the bill imposes a carbon dioxide equivalent fee. The sponsors claim that the...

EPA Revises Its Regulatory Agenda, A Flurry of Activity Expected in the Next Few Months

Last week, the EPA-specific listing on the website of the Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs was updated with timelines on the EPA’s regulatory efforts. Of potential interest, in chronological order of expected release, are the following rules: • May 2015 (Final Rule). Clean Water...

EPA Issues SIP Call to Eliminate SSM Defense

By Channing J. Martin EPA has issued a final rule that requires 36 states to revise their State Implementation Plans to eliminate a well-known and often-used Clean Air Act defense for excess emissions. While specific elements of the defense differ from state-to-state, the defense generally offers...

FERC’s Reaction to CEQ’s Greenhouse Gas Guidance: For Now, Business as Usual

On June 23, 2015, the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission issued an Order Denying Rehearing, [subscribers can access an enhanced version of this order: lexis.com | Lexis Advance ], of its earlier April 6, 2015 order, [subscribers can access an enhanced version of this order: lexis.com | Lexis Advance...

EPA Proposes Endangerment and Cause or Contribute Finding for Aircraft Emissions

In a rule signed on June 10, 2015, EPA proposed to find that greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions from engines used in certain types of aircraft contribute to air pollution that endangers health and welfare under section 231(a) of the Clean Air Act. Further, anticipating that the International Civil Aviation...

Pope Says No to Cap and Trade

By Tricia Caliguire "Pope Francis Stands Up to Climate Deniers," or so says the editorial board of the Newark Star Ledger . Yes, but the headline could have read, "Pope says No to Cap and Trade." In his ENCYCLICAL LETTER LAUDATO SI’ OF THE HOLY FATHER FRANCIS ON CARE FOR...

"Capacious" Term Dooms MATS Rule - Does It Say Anything About the Clean Power Plan?

By J. Wylie Donald The Energy Information Agency predicted the retirement of up to 60 gigawatts of coal-fired electricity generation by 2020. A significant contributor to that evolution was the Mercury and Air Toxics Standard or MATS Rule. Until now that is, because a 5-4 majority on the Supreme...

OMB Begins Review of EPA Proposals to Curb Methane Emissions, Define Major Source

By Meredith Odato Graham In late June the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) sent a highly-anticipated proposed rule to the White House Office of Management and Budget (OMB) for interagency review that would address methane emissions in the oil and natural gas sector. Earlier this year, EPA...

U.S. Supreme Court Invalidates EPA’s Regulation of Mercury from Power Plants

On June 29, 2015, the U.S. Supreme Court reversed, [subscribers can access an enhanced version of this opinion: lexis.com | Lexis Advance ], the U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit, [subscribers can access an enhanced version of this opinion: lexis.com | Lexis Advance ], and invalidated U.S. EPA's...

How the Supreme Court Just Delayed the Clean Power Plan

By Tricia Caliguire The Supreme Court’s decision in Michigan v. EPA , [subscribers can access an enhanced version of this opinion: lexis.com | Lexis Advance ], holding that the Environmental Protection Agency should have considered costs when making the decision to regulate mercury emissions...

Supreme Court - EPA Must Consider Costs before Regulating Mercury Emissions from Power Plants

On June 29, 2015, the U.S. Supreme Court ruled in Michigan v. EPA, [subscribers can access an enhanced version of this opinion: lexis.com | Lexis Advance ], that the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) failed to properly consider compliance costs before promulgating the Mercury and Air Toxics...

Michigan v. EPA – Setting the Stage for The Clean Power Plan and WOTUS

On June 28, 2015, the U.S. Supreme Court filed its 5-4 ruling on the challenge to US EPA Mercury Air Toxics (MATS) rule. Michigan, et al. v. Environmental Protection Agency, et al., No. 14-46 . http://www.supremecourt.gov/opinions/14pdf/14-46_10n2.pdf . In short the decision reverses and remands the...