A total of 1,157 letters were sent to the EPA voicing opposition to EPA’s New Source Performance Standard for carbon dioxide.
Basin Electric Power Cooperative
- June 29, 2012
The comment period closed June 25 on an Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) proposed rule that threatens the future of coal-based energy generation.
A total of 1,157 letters were sent to the EPA through the Partners for Affordable Energy website, voicing opposition to EPA’s New Source Performance Standard (NSPS) for carbon dioxide (CO2). Basin Electric also filed official comments.
“Basin Electric does not object to EPA’s desire to address climate change,” said Claire Olson, Basin Electric senior vice president and general counsel. “But it does object to doing so in a way that exceeds EPA’s authority, does not comply with the Clean Air Act, and results in setting imprudent energy policy for the United States.”
The proposed rule sets an emission standard of 1,000 pounds of CO2 per megawatt-hour for new generation facilities. That would essentially make it impossible to construct new coal-based power plants. It could also increasingly hinder future energy production and increase the cost of energy for consumers.
Letters sent through Partners for Affordable Energy spanned 20 states.
"With no technology commercially available to capture CO2, the EPA rule effectively takes new coal-based power plants out of the mix as utilities and generation and transmission cooperatives look at new baseload generation options,” said Steve Van Dyke, director of communications for Partners for Affordable Energy. “We were happy that so many people from such a diverse geographic region took the time to voice their concerns with the EPA.”
Right now, 42 percent of the electric power supplied in the United States comes from coal-based power plants. With the proposed rule, EPA is forcing utilities to exclude new coal-based power plants from resource plans, which will increase the cost of electricity to consumers.
Partners for Affordable Energy is a broad-based coalition of organizations and businesses — including Basin Electric — that supports coal-based electricity.