EPA Declines to Reconsider New Source Performance Standards

UPDATED 05.06.2016 EPA’s decision was published in the Federal Register on May 6, 2016.

On April 29, EPA released its denial of five petitions for reconsideration of the New Source Performance Standards, filed by Utility Air Regulatory Group, American Electric Power, Ameren Corp., the State of Wisconsin, and Energy and Environment Legal Institute.  EPA is deferring action on the issue of treatment of biomass, raised by petitioners Biogenic CO2 Coalition and the State of Wisconsin.  This notice of final action has not yet been published in the Federal Register (publication will trigger the clock to seek judicial review of EPA’s action).

In its Basis for Denial of Petitions,  EPA summarizes the arguments made in the petitions and its rationale for denying reconsideration.  Petitioners argued, among other things, that CCS is not adequately demonstrated (and discussed, in particular, operational experience at SaskPower Boundary Dam), EPA’s estimates of CCS capital costs are arbitrarily low, and EPA selecting an arbitrary baseline emission rate from which to calculate emission reductions.  Ameren argued that the NSPS should be considered as a single unit of rules with the proposed federal plan.  Energy and Environment Legal Institute argued that an EPA official engaged in illegal ex parte contacts with environmental organizations before EPA proposed the rule.

EPA determined that the issues raised in the petitions for reconsideration do not cause it to deviate from its findings and conclusions.

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