EPA Chief Calls for Ending Wind Tax Credits

With Congress contemplating a rewrite of the tax code, opponents of that deal are hoping to end those tax breaks early, putting the wind and solar industry on the defense. 

"A deal is a deal," American Wind Energy Association CEO Tom Kiernan told the Conservative Clean Energy Summit last week. "Just stick with that [production tax credit] phaseout."

https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2017-10-09/epa-chief-calls-...

EPA Takes Another Step To Advance President Trump's America First Strategy, Proposes Repeal Of "Clean Power Plan"

10/10/2017
Contact Information: 
press@epa.gov

WASHINGTON (October 10, 2017) – Today, U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) Administrator Scott Pruitt issued a Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (NPRM), proposing to repeal the so-called “Clean Power Plan (CPP).”  After reviewing the CPP, EPA has proposed to determine that the Obama-era regulation exceeds the Agency’s statutory authority. Repealing the CPP will also facilitate the development of U.S. energy resources and reduce unnecessary regulatory burdens associated with the development of those resources, in keeping with the principles established in President Trump’s Executive Order on Energy Independence.

“The Obama administration pushed the bounds of their authority so far with the CPP that the Supreme Court issued a historic stay of the rule, preventing its devastating effects to be imposed on the American people while the rule is being challenged in court,” said EPA Administrator Scott Pruitt.  “We are committed to righting the wrongs of the Obama administration by cleaning the regulatory slate.  Any replacement rule will be done carefully, properly, and with humility, by listening to all those affected by the rule.

CPP Appears to be Inconsistent with the Clean Air Act

The CPP, issued by the Obama administration, was premised on a novel and expansive view of Agency authority that the Trump administration now proposes to determine is inconsistent with the Clean Air Act.  In fact, the CPP was put on hold in February 2016, when the U.S. Supreme Court issued an unprecedented, historic stay of the rule.

“EPA will respect the limits of statutory authority.  The CPP ignored states’ concerns and eroded longstanding and important partnerships that are a necessary part of achieving positive environmental outcomes. We can now assess whether further regulatory action is warranted; and, if so, what is the most appropriate path forward, consistent with the Clean Air Act and principles of cooperative federalism,” said Administrator Pruitt.

The CPP was issued pursuant to a novel and expansive view of authority under Section 111 of the Clean Air Act (CAA).  The CPP required regulated entities to take actions “outside the fence line.” Traditionally, EPA Section 111 rules were based on measures that could be applied to, for, and at a particular facility, also referred to as “inside the fence line” measures. Prior to the CPP being issued, every single Section 111 rule on the books, including a handful of existing source rules and around 100 new-source rules, obeyed this limit. As the CPP departed from this traditional limit on EPA’s authority under an “inside the fence line” interpretation, EPA is proposing to repeal it. 

EPA has now sent the NPRM to the Federal Register for publication.  Upon publication, the public will have 60 days to submit comments. 

The repeal package includes:

  1. The “preamble,” which lays out the proposed legal interpretation, policy implications, and a summary of the cost-benefits analysis of the proposed repeal; and
  2. The “Regulatory Impact Analysis (RIA),” an in-depth cost-benefit technical analysis.

CPP Repeal Saves up to $33 Billion in Avoided Costs in 2030 

The proposed repeal both examines the Obama administration’s cost-benefit analysis, as well as provides insights to support an updated analysis of the environmental, health, and economic effects of the proposed repeal. The Trump administration estimates the proposed repeal could provide up to $33 billion in avoided compliance costs in 2030.

The previous administration’s estimates and analysis of these costs and benefits was, in multiple areas, highly uncertain and/or controversial.  Specific areas of controversy and/or uncertainty in the Obama administration’s analysis of CPP include:

Domestic versus global climate benefits: The previous administration compared U.S. costs to an estimate of supposed global benefits, and failed to follow well-established economic procedures in estimating those benefits.

“Co-benefits” from non-greenhouse-gas pollutants:  The Obama administration relied heavily on reductions in other pollutants emitted by power plants, essentially hiding the true net cost of the CPP by claiming benefits from reducing pollutants that had nothing to do with the rule’s stated purpose. 

Energy cost and savings accounting: The Obama administration counted “energy efficiency” results of their rule as an avoided cost, resulting in a cost estimate being considerably lower than it would have been if they used the appropriate practice of considering these effects as benefits, rather than subtracting them from costs. Had the Obama administration used the Office of Management and Budget’s longstanding requirements and accounted cost and savings accordingly, it would have presented a more accurate accounting of the total cost of the CPP.

In this proposed repeal and its accompanying technical documents, this administration is, in a robust, open, and transparent way, presenting a wide range of analysis scenarios to the public.

As part of the notice-and-comment process for this proposed repeal, EPA will continue this analysis and inform the public, as necessary, to get feedback on new modeling and other information. The final action on this proposed repeal will address the results of this ongoing work.

Forthcoming is an Advanced Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (ANPRM) that will be reflective of a thoughtful and responsible approach to regulatory action grounded within the authority provided by the statute.

“With this action, the Trump administration is respecting states’ role and reinstating transparency into how we protect our environment,” said Administrator Pruitt. 

Background
On March 28, President Trump signed an Executive Order on Energy Independence, establishing a national policy in favor of energy independence, economic growth, and the rule of law. The purpose of the Executive Order (EO) is to facilitate the development of U.S. energy resources and to reduce unnecessary regulatory burdens associated with the development of those resources. That same day, EPA Administrator Scott Pruitt signed four Federal Register notices in response to the EO, including a formal announcement of review of the Clean Power Plan. After substantial review, the Agency has proposed to determine that the Clean Power Plan (CPP) must be repealed.

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Comment by Willem Post on October 14, 2017 at 10:24pm

Germany is going to miss its 2020 and 2030 emissions targets by a country mile. See URL

http://www.climatechangenews.com/2017/10/11/germany-miss-climate-ta...

By Karl Mathiesen

For all of its chancellor’s lofty rhetoric about climate leadership, Germany remains western Europe’s most ardent coal burner.

That means it’s going to miss its 2020 emissions targets by a country mile. That failure will be “a disaster for Germany’s international reputation as a climate leader”, according to an environment ministry document leaked to Clean Energy Wire (Clew) this week.

That was the bad, here’s the good

September’s elections threw up a left-right coalition as the most likely next government. The Greens will be the most junior partner, but in exclusive interviews they told Clew and Climate Home that “there will be no coalition agreement without substantial progress in climate protection”.

That puts a German coal phase out at the very centre of the political discussion.

Meanwhile, on Wednesday, the Netherlands’ new government announced it will have closed all of the country’s coal plants by 2030 – including three that were only completed in 2015.

On the same day, the UK and Canada said they were launching a global alliance of nations committed to ending coal power. The UK also released its long awaited clean growth strategy, the plan was a return to sanity for a Tory government that has long been held in thrall on environment by a deeply conservative set of backbenchers. Megan Darby has a look under the hood.

Climate Conversations

How Walmart beats the World Bank on carbon footprinting – Helena Wright, E3G

The ugly

Former Australian prime minister Tony Abbott’s speech at a London-based climate sceptic thinktank on Monday lead news reporting across Australia.

Abbott views the world – and his role in it – as a contest between western, Christian reason and rising tides of irrationality. He said climate change, and the urgent campaign for action, was a symptom of the loss of “cultural self-confidence” in the west and filled a hole left by the decline of religious faith. “Believers can now be found for almost anything and everything,” he said.

In fact, climate change was “probably doing good”, he added.

Canada’s environment minister Catherine McKenna was also in London. She issued an exasperated rebuke to the Aussie politician. Inuit people living in Canada’s rapidly warming Arctic probably don’t think global warming is a good thing, Megan Darby heard her say.

Finally, still on ugly, the US will pull out of the UN’s cultural body, partly over its acceptance of Palestine as a full member. What does that mean for the UN’s climate body, which Palestine joined in 2016?

Comment by Shellie Correia on October 11, 2017 at 5:14pm

Brilliant news!  It's truly a blessing that the wind industry treated President Trump so badly before he was elected.  Now he knows the truth about the wind/climate scams!  The wind pushers put themselves under the "Trump microscope", and that will bring the whole scam crashing down!

Comment by Thinklike A. Mountain on October 10, 2017 at 11:44pm

EPA Chief Scott Pruitt Proposes to Save $33 Billion with Repeal of Obama-Era Energy Plan

http://www.breitbart.com/big-government/2017/10/10/epa-chief-scott-...

Hannah Pingree on the Maine expedited wind law

Hannah Pingree - Director of Maine's Office of Innovation and the Future

"Once the committee passed the wind energy bill on to the full House and Senate, lawmakers there didn’t even debate it. They passed it unanimously and with no discussion. House Majority Leader Hannah Pingree, a Democrat from North Haven, says legislators probably didn’t know how many turbines would be constructed in Maine."

https://pinetreewatch.org/wind-power-bandwagon-hits-bumps-in-the-road-3/

 

Maine as Third World Country:

CMP Transmission Rate Skyrockets 19.6% Due to Wind Power

 

Click here to read how the Maine ratepayer has been sold down the river by the Angus King cabal.

Maine Center For Public Interest Reporting – Three Part Series: A CRITICAL LOOK AT MAINE’S WIND ACT

******** IF LINKS BELOW DON'T WORK, GOOGLE THEM*********

(excerpts) From Part 1 – On Maine’s Wind Law “Once the committee passed the wind energy bill on to the full House and Senate, lawmakers there didn’t even debate it. They passed it unanimously and with no discussion. House Majority Leader Hannah Pingree, a Democrat from North Haven, says legislators probably didn’t know how many turbines would be constructed in Maine if the law’s goals were met." . – Maine Center for Public Interest Reporting, August 2010 https://www.pinetreewatchdog.org/wind-power-bandwagon-hits-bumps-in-the-road-3/From Part 2 – On Wind and Oil Yet using wind energy doesn’t lower dependence on imported foreign oil. That’s because the majority of imported oil in Maine is used for heating and transportation. And switching our dependence from foreign oil to Maine-produced electricity isn’t likely to happen very soon, says Bartlett. “Right now, people can’t switch to electric cars and heating – if they did, we’d be in trouble.” So was one of the fundamental premises of the task force false, or at least misleading?" https://www.pinetreewatchdog.org/wind-swept-task-force-set-the-rules/From Part 3 – On Wind-Required New Transmission Lines Finally, the building of enormous, high-voltage transmission lines that the regional electricity system operator says are required to move substantial amounts of wind power to markets south of Maine was never even discussed by the task force – an omission that Mills said will come to haunt the state.“If you try to put 2,500 or 3,000 megawatts in northern or eastern Maine – oh, my god, try to build the transmission!” said Mills. “It’s not just the towers, it’s the lines – that’s when I begin to think that the goal is a little farfetched.” https://www.pinetreewatchdog.org/flaws-in-bill-like-skating-with-dull-skates/

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We have the facts on our side. We have the truth on our side. All we need now is YOU.

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 -- Mahatma Gandhi

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Vince Lombardi 

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