EPA Takes Action on Recent Landfill Rules

Co-authored by Yolunda Righteous, Summer Law Clerk, Breazeale, Sachse & Wilson, L.L.P.

EPA has decided to reconsider certain portions of two recent rules relating to municipal solid waste landfills and has issued a stay of those rules for 90 days during the reconsideration process. In doing so, EPA seems to be signaling the beginning of a process to roll-back yet another climate-related rule. Continue reading “EPA Takes Action on Recent Landfill Rules”

The hurdles for Trump’s EPA

The new Trump administration has made repeated statements regarding overly burdensome environmental regulations. For example, in his “Contract with the American Voter,” Trump pledged to lift restrictions on the production of energy reserves — including shale, oil, natural gas and clean coal — and allow the Keystone Pipeline to move forward. There have also been numerous statements regarding the repeal — in whole or in part — of existing regulations, such as the Clean Power Plan. Continue reading “The hurdles for Trump’s EPA”

The CPP Meets SCOTUS

The Supreme Court recently issued a stay of the Clean Power Plan, the Obama Administration’s signature regulation addressing greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions from existing power plants.

The Clean Power Plan (CPP) imposed the first-ever national standards to limit carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions from existing power plants. The CPP relies on Clean Air Act (CAA) Section 111(d) and established interim and final CO2 emission performance rates for fossil fuel-fired (mainly coal or oil) electric generating units. States are required to develop and implement plans to ensure that power plants achieve the interim CO2 emissions performance rates over the period of 2022 to 2029 and the final CO2 emission performance rates by 2030. The initial state plan was due on September 6, 2016 with final, complete state plans submitted no later than September 6, 2018. Continue reading “The CPP Meets SCOTUS”

After Coal, Is EPA Pivoting to Oil?

After tightening the noose and choking the coal industry through such stringent regulatory efforts as the Coal Combustion Residuals (CCR) Rule and the Clean Power Plan, EPA now seems to be focusing its efforts on the petroleum industry. At least two recent rulemakings, one final and one proposed, impact the upstream, transmission and downstream sectors of the oil and gas industry and serve to highlight EPA’s efforts to go beyond its regulation of coal to address oil. Continue reading “After Coal, Is EPA Pivoting to Oil?”

An Exploration of EPA’s Cost-Benefit And Regulatory Impact Analyses

Environmental regulation has become pervasive over the last several decades. Great strides have been made, leading to visible and tangible reductions in emissions and discharges and ultimately cleaner air and water. In recent years, though, emission reductions have become more difficult to obtain and more costly on a per ton basis, leading many to believe that the installation of additional controls or the imposition of additional regulatory requirements will achieve only incremental reductions in emissions and discharges. As such, their costs cannot be justified when balanced against an ever decreasing amount of benefits. Continue reading “An Exploration of EPA’s Cost-Benefit And Regulatory Impact Analyses”

EPA’s Greenhouse Gas Rules Causes More Harm Than Good

In what will likely disrupt energy production and raise the price of electricity while doing very little to combat ‘climate change,’ the Obama Administration recently moved forward to finalize its regulations of greenhouse gas emissions from power plants.  On August 3, EPA issued the final Clean Power Plan rule for new and existing plants. Continue reading “EPA’s Greenhouse Gas Rules Causes More Harm Than Good”