The US Environmental Protection Agency has released its Clean Air Act standard for carbon emission from new power plants. Under the proposed EPA rule, any new fossil-fuel-fired power plants (whether fueled by coal or natural gas or any other fossil fuel) would have to meet an "output-based standard of 1,000 pounds of CO2 per megawatt-hour (lb CO2/MWh gross)." (EPA Fact Sheet PDF) EPA believes that over 95% of existing gas-fired plants would meet this standard, but that coal-fired plants would need to incorporate carbon capture and sequestration (CCS) technology in order to meet the limit.
The proposed rule does not apply to existing plants or to plants currently under construction. Nor does it ban new coal power plants from being built (although others have remarked that this marks the beginning of the end of electricit from coal). But new coal plants will have to meet standard with additional equipment that is still costly to install and to operate. This makes it increasingly likely that new power plants will utilize fuels other than coal.
According to the EPA statement, "The proposed standard, which only applies to power plants built in the future, is flexible and would help minimize carbon pollution through the deployment of the same types of modern technologies and steps that power companies are already taking to build the next generation of power plants. EPA’s proposal is in line with these investments and will ensure that this progress toward a cleaner, safer and more modern power sector continues." If 'Clean Coal' is as viable as its lobby would like us to believe, there shoud be no problems with this.
link: EPA News Release
|< Prev||Next >|