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Obama to regulate GHG from Refinery & Power plants via EPA

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This topic contains 11 replies, has 5 voices, and was last updated by  Charles Randall 11 years, 10 months ago.

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  • #2425

    basil parmesan

    23 December 2010 Last updated at 13:06 ET

    Obama to regulate greenhouse gases from power plants
    Mr Obama is pushing the EPA to cut greenhouse gas emissions after a
    climate bill failed earlier this year.
    The Obama administration has said it will regulate greenhouse gas emissions from power plants amid opposition from industry and Republicans in Congress. The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) said it would regulate emissions from fossil fuel power plants by 2011 and petroleum refineries by 2012.
    President Barack Obama is pushing the EPA to cut emissions after a climate bill failed in Congress this year.
    But Republican lawmakers have said the EPA’s new rules will harm the economy.
    The EPA said it would propose figures for emissions cuts in 2011 and finalise them in 2012.
    The new rules are expected to limit the amount of carbon dioxide a plant can emit per each megawatt hour of electricity produced.
    “We are following through on our commitment to proceed in a measured and careful way to reduce greenhouse gas pollution that threatens the health and welfare of Americans and contributes to climate change,” EPA chief Lisa Jackson said in a statement.
    Collectively, fossil fuel power plants and petroleum refineries release nearly 40% of the total greenhouse gases emitted in the US. Republican objections
    Republicans, who will take control of the House of Representatives when the new Congress convenes on 5 January, have already expressed opposition to the new regulations.
    “I think we ought to start with a two-year pause” in upcoming EPA regulations, said Republican Representative Mike Simpson, who is expected to lead a House panel that controls the EPA’s budget.
    Mr Obama said last year that the US would curb emissions by 17% by 2020 compared with 2005 levels. Legislation forcing reductions in carbon dioxide and other greenhouse gas emissions, which are believed by most climate scientists to contribute to global warming, was struck down in Congress this summer.

  • #5356

    Charles Randall

    Here is update on increased EPA regulations around Refinery/Power plants GHG emissions and shows Obama is driving it; Just in case there is any doubt where the push by EPA to increase regulations came from after the climate bill failed in Congress.
    Presidential Adminstrative mandates to fullfil useless Enviromental Carbon Tax and Climate change regulations when the Congress and people have voted down this regulation thru their representatives in Congress is an just another over-reach and federal power grab that needs to be confronted and defeated once again.
    Hopefully the increase in Republican congressmen who are only too aware of voter feelings in these areas can block something that serves no useful purpose except to handicap American manufactures.

  • #5285


    House GOP Readies Ban on EPA Greenhouse Gas Regulations

    Published February 02, 2011 | Associated Press
    WASHINGTON In a sharp challenge to the Obama administration, House Republicans intend to unveil legislation Wednesday to ban the Environmental Protection Agency from regulating greenhouse gases under the Clean Air Act and expect to advance the bill quickly, officials disclosed Tuesday night.
    The officials said the bill would nullify all of the steps the EPA has taken to date on the issue, including a threshold finding that greenhouse gases constitute a danger to the public health and welfare. In addition, it seeks to strip the agency of its authority to use the law in any future attempts to crack down on the emissions from factories, utilities and other stationary sources.
    Many scientists say that carbon dioxide and other heat-trapping pollution contribute to global warming, and attempts at regulating them is a major priority for President Barack Obama as well as environmentalists. Critics argue the evidence is thin and that new rules will drive up the cost of business and cause the loss of jobs.
    The officials who described the GOP plans did so on condition of anonymity, saying they were not authorized to pre-empt the release of a draft measure prepared by the Energy and Commerce Committee, chaired by Rep. Fred Upton of Michigan.

    The legislation marks yet another arena in which newly empowered House Republicans are moving quickly to challenge the administration.
    Sworn into office less than a month ago, the House has already voted to repeal last year’s health care law and is advancing toward a series of expected confrontations with Obama over Republican demands for deep spending cuts. In addition, Speaker John Boehner, R-Ohio, recently announced support for legislation to restrict abortions.
    A vote on the greenhouse gases bill would occur first in the Energy and Commerce Committee, and is expected later this winter. The measure would then go to the House floor, where Republicans express confidence they have a strong enough majority to overcome objections by Democrats, many of whom are expected to oppose it on environmental grounds.
    Republicans are attempting similar restrictions in the Senate, where the Democrats are in a majority and the political situation is more complicated. Sen. John Barrasso of Wyoming has introduced a more sweeping measure than the one House Republicans are drafting. At the same time, Sen. Jay Rockefeller, D-W.Va., has proposed a two-year moratorium on EPA attempts to regulate greenhouse gases under the Clean Air Act, a plan that already has attracted a handful of Democratic supporters.
    The Supreme Court ruled in 2007 that the EPA has authority to regulate greenhouse gases under the Clean Air Act, but it wasn’t until the Obama administration took office that the effort began.
    Initially, the administration’s principal focus in the area was on passage of legislation to impose restrictions, but that attempt failed when the Senate balked at a bill Democrats pushed through the House in 2009.
    Since the Republican election gains of last fall, Obama has made several moves to accommodate the concerns of business, including an executive order to weed out proposed new regulations that would hurt job growth. Despite the order, there has been no indication to date that the White House intends to stop plans to regulate greenhouse gases through the Clean Air Act.
    In a statement posted on its website late last year, the EPA announced it is moving unilaterally to clamp down on power plant and oil refinery greenhouse emissions, announcing plans for developing new standards over the next year.
    EPA administrator Lisa Jackson said the aim was to better cope with pollution contributing to climate change.
    “We are following through on our commitment to proceed in a measured and careful way to reduce GHG pollution that threatens the health and welfare of Americans,” Jackson said in a statement. She said emissions from power plants and oil refineries constitute about 40 percent of the greenhouse gas pollution in this country.

  • #5284

    Charles Randall

    Here is update on battle between Congress and EPA over Regulations on GHG. After Congress failed pass legislation around Carbon Tax & GHG regulations in 2009, the Obama adminstration charged EPA to do it anyway using 2007 Clean Air Act which had never implemented until this year. 
    Along similar lines a California state Superior Court Judge ruled more review was needed to finalize Calif. AB32 climate law. Saying State air quality regulators must conduct further analysis before fully implementing California’s landmark 2006 climate law.
    <see article @;.v=1 > Unfortunately this does not become barrier to implementation of this law only an impediment. Anything Environmental liberals cannot get put in place on national basis thru congress, is often pushed thru in California on state basis where strong anti-business and Nimby strongholds exist and results slanted to force more states to adopt.
    Both the EPA GHG and California AB32 regulations will become death sentence for US Industries dependent Factories/Refinery/Power plants that have to compete against cheap imports from “Developing Countries like China, India, & Russia” with Little mandated environmental regulations or investments. The weak US economic recovery would not survive this handicap that were defeated thru normal National Congressional legislation.

  • #5222

    Charles Randall

    Republicans Launch Bill To Axe EPA Carbon Rules

    Date: 04-Mar-11    Author: Timothy Gardner
    Republicans in the House of Representatives introduced a bill on Thursday that would permanently stop the Environmental Protection Agency from regulating emissions blamed for warming the planet.
    President Barack Obama would veto a bill that permanently blocks the agency from tackling climate change, administration officials have said. Obama has pledged to the world the United States will cut greenhouse gases to about 17 percent below 2005 levels by 2020.
    Representative Fred Upton, the chairman of the House Energy and Commerce Committee, introduced the bill, called the Energy Tax Prevention Act.
    Senator James Inhofe, a climate skeptic who is writing a book on global warming called “The Hoax,” also plans to introduce a version of the legislation on Thursday.
    “The EPA is pursuing a dramatic shift in our nation’s energy and environmental policy that would send shock waves through our economy,” said Ed Whitfield, the chair of the House Energy and Power Subcommittee, who co-sponsored the bill.
    The Supreme Court ruled in 2007 that the EPA could regulate greenhouse gases under federal law. The agency then declared the emissions endanger public health, which paved the way for its regulation of them.
    Democrats Collin Peterson and Dan Boren also signed onto the House bill. Republicans hope to have at least one Democrat from the Senate on board on Thursday.
    The bill, a draft copy of which Upton and Inhofe released earlier this month, will likely first go to a vote in the Republican-controlled House. If it passes, Republicans hope it will gain momentum in the Senate and pick up Democrats from industrial states who face tough elections next year.
    Some Democrats may find it hard to vote against a bill that aims to stop regulations some businesses say will shut factories and hurt jobs.
    Senator Joe Manchin from coal-rich West Virginia, who ran a campaign ad last year in which he shot a copy of a climate bill with a rifle, is one Democrat who Republicans hope will support the bill.
    Analysts have said the legislation could face a tough battle because a permanent blockage of EPA regulations is too harsh in scope to get the 60 votes needed to pass in the Senate.
    Analysts have said there is a better chance for passage of a bill pushed by Senator Jay Rockefeller, a West Virginia Democrat, which would delay EPA from taking action for two years.
    Many big power companies, such as New Jersey-based NRG Energy Inc, have said they want the EPA to continue regulating as it would give them more certainty in investing in future power plants.
    The EPA in January began requiring big industries to hold permits for emitting greenhouse gases, the first step in regulating the pollution. The agency plans to propose performance standards on power plants in July and oil refiners in December that would limit their emissions.
    Environmentalists decried the introduction of the legislation. “These two bills are yet more Dirty Air Acts intended to give the nation’s biggest polluters a way out of limits to their carbon dioxide pollution that’s likely to exacerbate asthma and lung diseases by worsening smog, and increase deadly heat waves and extreme weather conditions,” said Earthjustice legislative representative Sarah Saylor

  • #5186

    Charles Randall

    The Senate’s EPA Showdown – Democrats face a moment of truth on regulatory cap and trade.
    The Environmental Protection Agency debate lands in the Senate this week, amid the makings of a left-right coalition to mitigate the agency’s abuses. Few other votes this year could do more to help the private economy?but only if enough Democrats are willing to buck the White House.
    This moment arrived unexpectedly, with Majority Leader Harry Reid opening a small business bill to amendments. Republican leader Mitch McConnell promptly introduced a rider to strip the EPA of the carbon regulation authority that the Obama Administration has given itself. Two weeks ago, Mr. Reid pulled the bill from the floor once it became clear Mr. McConnell might have the 13 Democrats he needs to clear 60.
    The votes are now due as soon as tomorrow, and Mr. Reid is trying to attract 41 Democrats with a rival amendment from Senate Finance Chairman Max Baucus. The Baucus plan is a political veneer that would exempt some farms and businesses from the EPA maw but at the cost of endorsing everything else. The question for Democrats is whether their loyalties to President Obama and EPA chief Lisa Jackson trump the larger economic good, not to mention constituents already facing far higher energy costs.
    The story of how we arrived at this pass begins in 1999, when Clinton EPA chief Carol Browner floated the idea that carbon dioxide could be regulated as a pollutant under the 1970 Clean Air Act and its later amendments. The Bush Administration rejected Ms. Browner’s theory, in part because Congress kept rejecting statutory language to that effect.
    Several states and green groups sued, and the question reached the Supreme Court in 2006. With Massachusetts v. EPA, a 5-4 majority broadly rewrote the definition of “pollutant,” but it also narrowly held that “EPA no doubt has significant latitude as to the manner, timing, content, and coordination of its regulations” (our emphasis). In other words, the Court created new powers via judicial invention but left their use to the discretion of the executive branch.
    The Obama Administration moved to exploit this power by threatening that the EPA would make a carbon “endangerment finding” if Congress didn’t pass a climate bill. This threat was potent for the simple reason that the Clean Air Act’s intrusive command-and-control systems were never written or meant to address an emission as ubiquitous as carbon dioxide. It’s like trying to perform surgery with a butter knife, and Mr. Obama hoped that the pain would force industry to beg for cap and tax. The EPA went ahead with its endangerment ruling, but cap and trade failed in the Senate last year anyway.
    The EPA now claims its carbon regulation is compelled by the Supreme Court, as if Congress can’t change the law, as well as by “science,” as if Congress is a potted plant. Someone even disinterred former Republican EPA Administrators William Ruckelshaus and Christine Todd Whitman to claim in the Washington Post last week that Congress would somehow be voting against “environmental progress.”
    But a vote for the McConnell amendment, which would permanently bar the EPA from regulating carbon unless Congress passed new legislation, is justified on democratic prerogatives alone. Whatever one’s views of Massachusetts v. EPA or climate science, no elected representative has ever voted on an EPA plan that has often involved the unilateral redrafting of plain-letter law.
    A vote to overrule the EPA is also needed to remove the regulatory uncertainty hanging over the economy. This harm is already apparent in energy, where the EPA is trying to drive coal-fired power out of existence. The core electricity generation that the country needs to meet future demand is not being built, and it won’t be until the EPA is bridled. This same dynamic is also chilling the natural gas boom in the Northeast, and it is making U.S. energy-intensive industries less competitive world-wide.
    As the EPA screws tighten, the costs will be passed along to consumers, with the same damage as a tax increase but none of the revenues. Eventually, the EPA plan will appreciably lower the U.S. standard of living. Hardest hit will be the middle-American regions that rely on coal or heavy industry, though the EPA bulldozer will run over small businesses too. The Clean Air Act, once the carbon doomsday machine has been activated, won’t merely apply to “major” sources of emissions like power plants or factories. Its reach will include schools, farms, hospitals, restaurants, basically any large building.
    Which brings us to this week’s Senate votes. Democrats to watch will be Sherrod Brown (Ohio), Bob Casey (Pennsylvania), Tim Johnson (South Dakota), Tom Carper (Delaware), Mary Landrieu (Louisiana), Kent Conrad (North Dakota), Amy Klobuchar (Minnesota), Claire McCaskill (Missouri), Jim Webb (Virginia), Ben Nelson (Nebraska), Carl Levin and Debbie Stabenow (Michigan) and John Rockefeller and Joe Manchin (West Virginia). All of them have been publicly critical of the EPA, and, not incidentally, most of them face a tough re-election.
    The White House and Mr. Reid will offer phony alternatives to keep 41 Democrats in the corral. The Baucus amendment is the classic Beltway trick of trying to provide political cover while not solving the problem. Mr. Rockefeller is sponsoring a two-year delay before the EPA rules take effect, but that will merely defer the problem.
    The McConnell amendment is one of the best proposals for growth and job creation to make it onto the Senate docket in years. If Mr. Obama is intent on defending the EPA’s regulatory assault, then the least Senate Democrats can do is force him to defend his choices himself.

  • #5179

    Roger Hodges

    Did you write this?  Awesome post.  Puts into perspective for all of us, whether in the industry or not.  If this was not an article from somewhere (and I don’t see any other names given, as you usually do), I’d recommend sending this out to all the newspapers and on-line outlets you can find!  Again, it really breaks it down for anyone who can read!

  • #5178

    Charles Randall

    Roger – Thanks but no I did not write this; it was forwarded to me by one my peers in Consulting/Refinery Tech groups but it lacked the author or source (which often happens when good articles showing true perspective gets daisy chained). I tried to track down the original article but was unable to locate it which makes me think it was large company internal assesment of current status of regulatory action by the US government entities.
    I have found that most of Newspapers and Media sectors have a Liberal/Environmetal focus against this type of honest assesment, and would not reprint or cherry pick details to give negative interpertation of these conclusions. There is long list of misreperesented positions on Global Warming, Oil Industry Speculation by Wallstreet, Alternate Energy and this is just the latest addition by government intent on doing end run around the peoples stated objection to very stupid approach (aka people/Congress voting down Cap-and-Trade).

  • #5177

    Roger Hodges

    Thanks regardless.  I concur with the media slant and have been getting my news from “alternate” sources, i.e. on-line, talk radio, etc. for years now.  They still have their opinions, but it is easier to dig through and get to the facts and decide for myself.  You guys do a great job at, not just on “how-to’s”, but with industry related news as well.  For what its worth, keep up the good work!

  • #5092

    wu wai

    The weak US economic recovery would not survive this handicap![link=]

  • #5088

    Thanks regardless. I concur with the media slant and have been getting my news from “alternate” sources, i.e. on-line, talk radio, etc. for years now. They still have their opinions, but it is easier to dig through and get to the facts and decide for myself. You guys do a great job at, not just on “how-to’s”, but with industry related news as well. For what its worth, keep up the good work!

  • #5080

    Charles Randall

    Johnsonkid – looks to me like your just re-posting comments like one above from cocoah94’s so you can get in stupid advertisement for “birkenstock shoes”.
    You need to take that out of your signature line or else pay for real add on vendor section.

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