Tag Archives: EPA

Donald Trump commits the U.S. to his anti-science climate change denial (Updated)

Last week the New York Times reported, Arctic’s Winter Sea Ice Drops to Its Lowest Recorded Level:

After a season that saw temperatures soar at the North Pole, the Arctic has less sea ice at winter’s end than ever before in nearly four decades of satellite measurements.

The extent of ice cover — a record low for the third straight year — is another indicator of the effects of global warming on the Arctic, a region that is among the hardest hit by climate change, scientists said.

“This is just another exclamation point on the overall loss of Arctic sea ice coverage that we’ve been seeing,” said Mark Serreze, the director of the National Snow and Ice Data Center, a government-backed research agency in Boulder, Colo. “We’re heading for summers with no sea ice coverage at all.”

Dr. Serreze said that such a situation, which would leave nothing but open ocean in summer until fall freeze-up begins, could occur by 2030, although many scientists say it may not happen for a decade or two after that.

Less ice coverage also means that there is more dark ocean to absorb more of the sun’s energy, which leads to more warming and melting in a feedback loop called Arctic amplification.

Continue reading

SCOTUS leaves EPA’s MATS rule in place

The Supreme Court on Monday left intact a key Obama administration environmental regulation, refusing to take up an appeal from 20 states to block rules that limit the emissions of mercury and other harmful pollutants that are byproducts of burning coal. Supreme Court rejects case challenging key White House air pollution regulation:

carbon-emissionsThe high court’s decision leaves in place a lower-court ruling that found that the regulations, put in place several years ago by the Environmental Protection Agency, could remain in effect while the agency revised the way it had calculated the potential industry compliance costs. The EPA finalized its updated cost analysis in April.

In a statement Monday, the EPA praised the court’s decision not to review the case, saying the mercury standards are an important part of a broader effort to ensure clean air for Americans.

Continue reading

States ask SCOTUS to stay EPA’s ‘Clean Power Plan’

carbon-emissionsImmediately following the EPA’s “Clean Power Plan” being published in October, twenty-seven states and dozens of industry groups filed lawsuits challenging the rule’s legality. More than a dozen other states and a coalition of environmental, public health, and renewable energy organizations intervened in support of the EPA. The D.C. Circuit Court of Appeals consolidated the various challenges under West Virginia et al. v. EPA (No. 15-1363).

Last week the D.C. Circuit Court of Appeals denied the motion for stay from 29 states to stay the Obama Administration’s EPA “Clean Power Plan” from going into effect,  allowing the rule to regulate carbon emissions from power plants to go into effect during the pendency of this litigation designed to challenge its legality. Read the court order here.

Today those States moved to block the “Clean Power Plan” at the U.S. Supreme Court. Lyle Denniston at SCOTUSblog reports:

Arguing that the Obama administration is aiming to shut down every last electricity-generating plant that burns coal or oil as fuel, officials of twenty-nine states asked the Supreme Court on Tuesday to block the new policy that the government calls its “Clean Power Plan.”  The officials also claimed that the plan is designed to turn the Environmental Protection Agency into a czar — “the nation’s central energy planning authority” pushing wind and solar power at the expense of older forms of generating capacity.

Continue reading

Consientious energy companies find that they can comply with EPA regulations

carbon-emissionsThe Arizona Republican has published a series of editorial opinions this year attacking EPA regulations and the effects on Arizona Public Service (APS) and Salt River Project (SRP). See, for example Editorial EPA wants us to change? Show us the bill first; We have the right to know cost of new EPA rules; Editorial Sinema, Kirkpatrick make a wise carbon vote; and New EPA clean-air rules threaten rural power co-ops.

The “editorial board” largely reflects the views of the Rush Limbaugh of The Republic, Doug MacEachern, See for example, EPA regulations good for economy? Bah!, and EPA emissions regulations coming down to cost. Got to keep your major advertisers happy and promote those Republican talking points.

Funny thing about those EPA regulations: those states that have sought to comply with the regulations have found that they can comply with the regulations. The Washington Post reported last week that Outrage over EPA emissions regulations fades as states find fixes:

Even after years of talk about a “war on coal,” Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell startled some of his constituents in March when he urged open rebellion against a White House proposal for cutting pollution from coal-fired power plants.

The Obama administration’s Clean Power Plan is “extremely burdensome and costly,” the Kentucky Republican said in letters advising all 50 states to boycott the rule when it goes into effect this summer.

The call for direct defiance was unusual even for McConnell, who has made a career of battling federal restrictions on coal. Yet more striking is what has happened since: Kentucky’s government and electric utilities have quietly positioned themselves to comply with the rule — something state officials expect to do with relatively little effort.

Continue reading

Court of Appeals dismisses premature claim against EPA Clean Power Plan

Back in April  I posted about the lawsuit by the Carbon Monopoly and its Tea-Publican lickspitter servants in the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia, trying to preemptively stop the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA)’s proposed Clean Power Plan rule before a final rule has even been published. Carbon Monopoly tries to preemptively stop the EPA’s Clean Power Plan rule.

On Tuesday, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia dismissed this premature claim. Court Gives Obama a Climate Change Win:

carbon-emissionsA federal court on Tuesday dismissed a lawsuit by the nation’s largest coal companies and 14 coal-producing states that sought to block one of President Obama’s signature climate change policies.

The lawsuit, Murray Energy v. E.P.A., challenged the Environmental Protection Agency’s proposed rule to reduce planet-warming greenhouse gas emissions from power plants. If enacted, the rule could shutter hundreds of such plants, freeze construction of future plants and slow demand for coal production in the United States.

A federal court on Tuesday dismissed a lawsuit by the nation’s largest coal companies and 14 coal-producing states that sought to block one of President Obama’s signature climate change policies.

Continue reading

Carbon Monopoly tries to preemptively stop the EPA’s proposed Clean Power Plan rule

The Carbon Monopoly and its Tea-Publican lickspitter servants were in the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia on Thursday trying to preemptively stop the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA)’s proposed Clean Power Plan rule before a final rule has even been published.

The judges did not appear to be buying it. Think Progress reports, Federal Judge On Stopping EPA Rule: ‘Why Would We Do That?’:

carbon-emissionsA coal mining company, West Virginia, and 15 other states argued Thursday that a federal court should stop the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA)’s proposed Clean Power Plan rule, but the three presiding judges did not seem convinced.

If the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia finds in favor of the petitioners, it would be a first for the rule-making process. The court has never issued a writ against a rule that has not been finalized.

“Do you know of any case when we have stopped rule-making? Why would we do that?” Judge Thomas Griffith asked Elbert Lin, an attorney for West Virginia, at the outset of the proceedings.

Continue reading