EPA to send revamped power plant rule to OMB next month

Source: Amanda Reilly, E&E News reporter • Posted: Thursday, July 26, 2018

EPA is wrapping up a proposed rulemaking package that targets the Obama-era rule for reducing carbon dioxide emissions at new power plants, according to a court filing late yesterday.

The agency plans to send the proposal to the White House Office of Management and Budget in August, EPA told the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit.

“This interagency review is the last major step in the proposal development process before the proposed rule package can be signed by the EPA Administrator and sent to the Federal Register for publication and public comment,” the court document said.

The 2015 new source rule required both new and modified coal-fired power plants to meet CO2 limits that cannot be met through efficiency improvements alone. Instead, utilities have to install carbon capture and utilization or sequestration technology.

Along with the Clean Power Plan, which covers existing power plants, the rule was at the center of the Obama administration’s climate change agenda.

EPA says it’s been reviewing the rule since President Trump’s March 2017 order requiring agencies to take another look at a host of Obama-era climate rules.

In the meantime, the D.C. Circuit agreed to indefinitely halt litigation over the new source rule. But unlike the Clean Power Plan, which has been stayed since a February 2016 Supreme Court order, the standards remain in effect.