The head of a key coal trade group sought to persuade the Obama administration to slowly phase in carbon capture requirements for new coal-fired power plants, and plans to continue making that argument.
"We put forward standards. I don't believe that you should just be against things, I think you need to have solutions," Robert "Mike" Duncan, president on the American Coalition for Clean Coal Electricity, told the Platts Energy Week television show on Sunday.
One of big question marks under President Barack Obama's climate plan is the amount of carbon that must be cut from power plants to reach his goal of reducing emissions 17 percent by 2020.
Environmental Protection Agency Administrator Gina McCarthy has contended that actual emissions reductions will be worked out with the states in advance of a proposal by next June. But one clue to the magnitude of the challenge was included in the Climate Action Report issued by the State Department on Thursday.
The report said Obama's target could be reached through overall annual energy sector carbon cuts from 8 percent to 12 percent by 2020, on top of reductions already expected from current regulations.
Environmental Protection Agency Administrator Gina McCarthy will make the case often in the coming months that proposed new power plant carbon regulations don't represent a war on coal, because no new coal plants were going to be built anyway.
Her critics accuse her of ignoring the cost of complying with EPA's mercury rule that will make old coal plants too expensive to upgrade. But what gives McCarthy confidence is the natural gas boom that President Barack Obama has embraced _ and must continue to encourage _ if he is to achieve his greenhouse gas reduction goals.
China's once-massive demand for coal appears to be waning as the nation looks to cut pollution and switch power sources, forcing some mining firms worldwide to look into more marketable commodities, The Wall Street Journal reports.
Sen. Joe Manchin of West Virginia on Wednesday became the first Democrat to announce his opposition to President Barack Obama's nominee to lead the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission.
Manchin, an advocate for coal-fired power, said the day before that he was troubled by the testimony of former Colorado utility regulator Ron Binz during his Senate Energy and Natural Resources confirmation hearing. In a statement declaring he would vote against his confirmation, Manchin said he has "grave concerns" about how Binz would chair FERC, a move that adds new uncertainty to the nominee's confirmation chances.
The ranking Republican on the Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee on Tuesday said she cannot yet support President Barack Obama's nominee to head the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission, putting a question mark over his potential confirmation.
Sen. Lisa Murkowski of Alaska said at the confirmation hearing for former Colorado electricity regulator Ron Binz that she was concerned about his past statements on the role of regulators and about how he would lead FERC. "At this point I am not convinced that your views are compatible with FERC's mission," she said.
Climate change and the future of coal have become priority issues in the Virginia gubernatorial race between Republican Ken Cuccinelli and Democrat Terry McAuliffe, with outside groups making heavy ad investments on both issues, ABC News reports.
President Barack Obama's regulatory and climate agendas take center stage in Washington this week with hearings on Capitol Hill and the planned release of his revised proposal to limit carbon emissions from new coal-fired power plants.
First up will be a hearing scheduled Tuesday in the Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee on three nominees, including his pick to chair the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission. The Environmental Protection Agency is set to follow, no later than Friday, with the release of the power plants proposal.
A draft agreement on tax extenders being negotiated by lawmakers –- which would, among other things, phase out the Production Tax Credit for wind energy -– also would face a veto from President Obama, according to an email from a White House spokeswoman, Bloomberg reports.
The Environmental Protection Agency will have to wait on moves to restrict development of Pebble Mine, as Judge H. Russel Holland has issued a preliminary injunction against them, Alaska Public Radio reports.
As representatives from Saudi Arabia, Russia, Venezuela and Mexico failed to agree on production cuts ahead of the OPEC meeting later this week, oil prices resumed their slide Tuesday. West Texas Intermediate Crude for January delivery plunged 2.2 percent, or $1.69, to $74.09 on the Nymex, while in London Brent tumbled $1.35 to $78.33, Bloomberg reports.
At a national average of $2.81 a gallon, Thanksgiving gasoline prices haven’t been this low since 2009, according to the AAA, which says that could trigger more than a 4 percent increase in people driving over the holiday, FuelFix reports.
On a 3-2 vote, the Florida Public Service Commission has fallen in line with proposals from Duke Energy Florida, Tampa Electric and Florida Power & Light, agreeing to wrap up solar rebate programs by the end of next year and reduce efficiency goals by more than 90 percent, the Tampa Bay Times reports.
The Illinois Commerce Commission has granted approval for Clean Line Energy Partners’ Rock Island Clean Line, intended to transmit power 500 miles from wind farms in the Plains states, Crain’s Chicago Business reports.
Departing Gov. Martin O’Malley, D-Md., says he’ll draw up rules to govern fracking in the western part of the state which will limit pollution risks, even though his pro-drilling Republican successor would have the power to loosen restrictions once he takes office in January, The Washington Post reports.
Friends of the Earth and the Western Organization of Resource Councils, backed by Microsoft co-founder Paul Allen, have filed a lawsuit in U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia against the Bureau of Land Management over the agency’s coal-leasing program, The Hill reports.
At least four small earthquakes have shaken the Dallas area since the weekend, and SMU seismologist Brian Stump told NBCDFW it’s possible they could be linked to fluid accumulating in wastewater injector wells in the region over the past decades.
People’s views about the scientific basis of climate change don’t change even when they’re confronted with extreme weather events, according to a study published online Monday in the journal Nature Climate Change, the Los Angeles Times reports.