The Environmental Protection Agency's rule limiting mercury releases from coal-fired power plants will prompt the closure of about 13 percent of coal-fired power generation capacity by 2025, the Government Accountability Office reported Monday, more than it previously predicted.
In an audit of federal monitoring of reliability issues as power generators comply with the rule and three others affecting coal plants proposed by EPA as of 2012, GAO said the operators plan to retire about 42,192 megawatts of capacity.
That estimate is a percentage point higher than upper end of the 2-to-12 percent in capacity retirements GAO projected two years ago, while planned retrofits are down about 30 percent.
CORRALES, N.M. (AP) — Environmental Protection Agency Administrator Gina McCarthy said Monday she's not backing down on her agency's efforts to implement a new rule that would assert regulatory authority over many of the nation's streams and wetlands despite criticisms that it amounts to a federal water grab.
The U.S. House approved a bill last week that would block the agency from moving forward with the rule, which aims to clarify the streams and waterways that could be protected from development under the Clean Water Act.
House Republicans on Monday compared the Keystone XL oil sands pipeline to the Apollo space program, the Transcontinental Railroad and the Hoover Dam, calling it a "landmark" project that the Obama administration is entangling in red tape.
In an issue brief released Monday by the Energy and Commerce Committee, chaired by Rep. Fred Upton, R-Mich., Republicans claimed the Keystone project is just one example of a major oil, gas and coal project that has fallen victim to President Barack Obama's regulatory meddling.
PHOENIX (AP) — Arizona congressional candidate Andy Tobin said Saturday that rural Arizona and parts of the country have been forgotten by Washington.
Tobin made the remarks while delivering the Republican national radio address from Picacho Peak, a prominent landmark in Arizona's 1st Congressional District.
The current Arizona House speaker said the state was essentially "under attack" from all the regulations enforced by the federal government. He cited the overregulation of energy and the "perpetrating a war on coal" as an example.
WASHINGTON (AP) — The powerful chemical industry is putting its lobbying muscle behind legislation that would establish standards for chemicals used in products from household goods to cellphones and plastic water bottles — but also make it tougher for states to enact their own regulations.
Many states already have acted on their own — and that's what's gotten the industry's attention.
BRUSSELS (AP) — New European Union sanctions against Russia announced Friday toughen financial penalties on the country's banks, arms manufacturers and its biggest oil company, Rosneft, to punish Moscow for what the West sees as efforts to destabilize Ukraine.
The United States was also expected to announce more sanctions Friday.
The EU measures, which were made official after a preliminary agreement Thursday, broaden the scope of penalties imposed in July. They increase restrictions to Europe's capital markets, which further limits the targeted Russian companies' ability to raise money, for example. They now also apply to major oil and defense companies, not only banks.
House Natural Resources Committee hearing, "Oversight of the Office of Inspector General and its Ongoing Failure to Comply with a Subpoena for Documents about a Recent Investigation." Interior Department Deputy Inspector General Mary Kendall to testify.
LOS ANGELES (AP) — A top Nuclear Regulatory Commission official Wednesday rejected a federal expert's recommendation to shut down California's last operating nuclear power plant until it can determine whether its reactors can withstand powerful shaking from nearby earthquake faults.
In a decision released Wednesday, Executive Director for Operations Mark Satorius said there is no immediate or significant safety concern at the Diablo Canyon plant.
WASHINGTON (AP) — The Republican-controlled House on Tuesday approved a bill to block the Obama administration from implementing a rule that asserts regulatory authority over many of the nation's streams and wetlands — an action that critics call a classic Washington overreach.
The Environmental Protection Agency has proposed a rule that it says will clarify which streams and waterways are shielded from development under the Clean Water Act, an issue that remains in dispute even after two U.S. Supreme Court rulings.
The Interior Department rule governing drilling on federal lands should contain “the strongest possible safeguards,” according to a letter sent to the Office of Management and Budget by Massachusetts Sen. Ed Markey and 11 of his Democratic colleagues, FuelFix reports.
Agreements reached between President Barack Obama and Prime Minister Narendra Modi during the Indian leader’s visit to the White House include a strategic partnership to improve energy security, clean energy and climate change resilience, The Hill reports.
Ahead of the weekly stockpile report issued Wednesday, oil was trading slightly higher the day after a big plunge. West Texas Intermediate crude for November delivery was up 43 cents to $91.59 in electronic trading on the Nymex, while in London Brent climbed 19 cents to $94.86, Bloomberg reports.
Shares in oilfield equipment maker National Oilwell Varco have dropped some 2.6 percent since the company announced it would buy back $3 billion worth from investors, the repurchase a sign that the firm may be running out of acquisition targets, FuelFix reports.
Seven Western states are starting up an energy imbalance market this week, which offers up electricity to buyers in five-minute increments, giving them a chance to smooth out the impact of more variable renewable energy into the grid, E&E reports.
The retirement of coal plants over the next six years – pushed by tougher federal emissions regulations – should cause an increase of up to 5 billion cubic feet a day in demand for natural gas, according to Standard & Poor’s Ratings Direct, Platts reports.
Claiming in a report that African-Americans bear a greater brunt of the health impacts from the use of coal as an energy source, the NAACP is calling for a more just energy policy in Utah and across the rest of the country, which would encourage developing alternative energy and clean energy, according to the Deseret News.
As technology advances -- with the availability of cheap sensors and a proliferation of software to help collect and analyze the data they gather -- the drive toward more energy efficiency in buildings is getting a big boost, The Wall Street Journal reports.
A special fund launched in Mexico Tuesday will handle income from the country’s oil and gas sector -– which has been newly opened to private investment –- giving some of it to the federal government and directing some to long-term savings, The Wall Street Journal reports.